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Nick Kyrgios reveals bromance with Andy Murray ahead of Centre Court clash

Published 03/07/2016

Serena Williams and other top seeds will be in action on People's Sunday
Serena Williams and other top seeds will be in action on People's Sunday

Australian firebrand Nick Kyrgios revealed his softer side when he spoke in glowing terms about his next opponent, Andy Murray, saying it was "love at first sight" when they first met.

Kyrgios revealed the pair have locker-room "banter", and that when they see each other in the changing rooms "we just give each other a look", adding: "We can't stop looking at each other for a bit."

The pair will face off on Centre Court in the last 16 on Monday after Kyrgios overcame Feliciano Lopez in four sets.

The match which will temporarily turn their loving in to loathing, but all will doubtless be forgotten when the pair get back to the changing rooms.

Describing their relationship off-court, the number 15 seed said it was "pretty good".

Kyrgios said: "We joke a lot. Obviously when he's in the locker room, it's just instant banter. We just have a lot of fun...

"When Andy walks in, we see each other, we just give each other a look. We can't stop looking at each other for a bit.

"When I see Roger (Federer), everyone sort of just looks at Roger. Roger has an aura about him. I think he's the greatest player of all time. I just watch him, I don't say anything. It's the same with Novak. But Andy, I don't know, it's different."

The 21-year-old has played up to his bad-boy persona in the first week of Wimbledon, landing himself with two fines for unsportsmanlike conduct and swearing on court.

But Murray has defended the younger player, accusing the media of trying to "wind him up the whole time".

Suggesting he gets a "rough ride", Murray said: "It's not really fair on him, to be honest", adding: "It happens a lot where it doesn't seem like he's really done much in comparison to what other players are doing, and he's the one that gets asked all the questions about it."

Kyrgios seemed to appreciate the support, telling reporters after his win over Lopez: "It's awesome. He backs me up a lot, which is good. It's just good to have one of the best players in the world, to have a good friend like that obviously.

"I see him at times more than I see my family, so it's good to have a friend like him."

Asked about his chances against Murray, Kyrgios said he was "beatable".

But he hinted their encounter would be a huge battle, saying: "He's a great athlete obviously. Moves extremely well, he knows the game so well. He's practically a brick wall from the back.

"There's not many weaknesses there, obviously. The only person he really loses to is Novak."

With Novak Djokovic out in a shock third-round defeat to American Sam Querrey, Murray is now favourite with the bookmakers to lift the gentlemen's singles trophy next Sunday.

Ladbrokes has him odds-on favourite at 10/11, with bookies facing a potential £10 million payout to patriotic fans should he go all the way.

Elsewhere on Sunday fans enjoyed the longest match of the Championships so far, when Jo-Wilfried Tsonga beat John Isner in four hours and 24 minutes - the last set being won at 19-17 - and the equal shortest match, when Serena Williams demolished German Annika Beck in just 51 minutes.

Visitors to SW19 quaffed Champagne and Pimm's and devoured strawberries and cream on Henman Hill as they basked in the sunshine on People's Sunday, just the fourth in Wimbledon's 130-year history.

Among the fans was American Allison Creekmore, who flew more than 3,000 miles from her home in New York for a whistlestop tour of Wimbledon after snapping up a ticket on Saturday.

The 41-year-old said: "It was crazy. I'm not necessarily a spontaneous person, and it might be one of the craziest things I've ever done."

Fans visiting on Monday will have a bumper day of action, with Federer, Serena Williams and Murray all in action on Centre Court.

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