Pressure for Kyrgios 'a lot to handle' ahead of Australian Open

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Nick Kyrgios admits the pressure he is facing is "a lot to handle", as he prepares for next month's Australian Open.

Having started 2022 with a doubles title with Thanasi Kokkinakis at his home grand slam, Kyrgios then advanced to the final of Wimbledon and suffered defeat at the hands of Novak Djokovic.

That form, which also saw him reach the quarter-finals at the US Open, has put the 27-year-old in the conversation as a title contender for the 2023 grand slams, the first of which begins in Melbourne on January 16.

Kyrgios is aware there are great expectations for him in the year ahead and conceded it is not easy being in the spotlight, particularly ahead of his home grand slam.

"I always believe that pressure is a privilege. In real life, there's not much pressure to being a professional tennis player," he told Eurosport.

"We earn great money, we travel around the world with our favourite people. We get to see different people, different cultures.

"In the scheme of things, that's not pressure but I completely understand going on the match court with all this expectation that 'Nick Kyrgios is legitimate chance to win a grand slam now'.

"There's a lot of pressure there, especially having the Australian Open and everyone in Australia expecting big things from me. It's a lot to handle sometimes. Being in the spotlight is not easy."

The last Australian man to win a singles grand slam title was Lleyton Hewitt in 2002 at Wimbledon, while the wait for men's success at home goes back further to 1976 – when Mark Edmondson was victorious in Melbourne.

While there is a desire for Kyrgios to end those lengthy waits, he has made it clear he wants the success for his own goals, not for anyone else.

"I've learnt that the people will never have enough. For me, I've achieved some great things in this sport and where I came from," he said.

"I know I'm content with myself. I want to achieve more for myself, but for all of my team, not for anyone else."