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Australia’s Nick Krygios hits a forehand against Andrey Rublev in a second round men’s match in the Miami Open at Hard Rock Stadium March 25, 2022. ― Reuters pic

Tuesday, 21 Jun 2022 8:12 AM MYT

SYDNEY, June 21 ― Nick Kyrgios yesterday became the first athlete to join Evolve, the new sports agency co-founded by four-time Grand Slam champion Naomi Osaka.

Osaka broke with IMG last month to launch Evolve with longtime agent Stuart Duguid. Evolve describes itself as a multifaceted agency focused on brand partnerships, investing, creating athlete-owned businesses, and philanthropy.

“Kyrgios embodies the types of athletes we want to work with at Evolve,” Osaka told sports business website Boardroom.

“He’s got an unmatched style, passion, and personality that is unlike any other in the sport. We have some big things in the pipeline for him that are very unique and pioneering.” Duguid called the fiery and controversial Kyrgios the most talented and entertaining tennis player on the tour.

The world number 45 is one of the biggest draws in the sport thanks to the unpredictable nature of his matches. While the hugely talented Australian often bamboozles opponents with an array of incredible trick shots, his on-court histrionics and run-ins with umpires have often dominated the headlines.

“Love or hate him, you definitely can’t keep your eyes off him. If you go to any junior tennis tournament, you will see Nick’s influence,” he said.

“For Gen Z and younger, he is absolutely the icon.” The big-serving Kyrgios, 27, won the Australian Open doubles title in January. He has won six singles titles on the ATP tour. ― Reuters