INDIAN WELLS, Calif. — Nick Kyrgios will await scan results on an ankle injury he suffered in his second round 7-6 (2), 3-6, 7-6 (4) loss to Grigor Dimitrov in Indian Wells on Sunday. On break point with Dimitrov serving at 4-4 in the third set, Kyrgios hit a running forehand cross-court and twisted his ankle on the follow-through, falling hard to the ground. Dimitrov says he didn't see Kyrgios fall, but he put the ball into the net to give Kyrgios the game and the opportunity to serve out the match. He had not been broken all day.
But the match turned with Kyrgios' injury. He waived off the trainer and despite being in obvious pain, chose to play on without a medical timeout. Dimitrov broke him easily, but he did well to hold his serve at 5-6 to force a tiebreak. Unable to get the lift on his powerful serve or move quickly side to side, Kyrgios' chances of winning the match quickly dissipated, and Dimitrov took the tiebreak 7-4.
"I thought I was playing some decent tennis," Kyrgios said. "It was tough conditions out there. It was hard to return. I thought we both struggled a little bit. But I just hung in and got the break. I actually fell after the shot, so I felt I was a bit unlucky. It obviously played a big part in me not serving out the match, because I had not really been broken before that."
Asked why he waived off the ATP trainer visit after falling, Kyrgios said he wanted to ride the momentum and adrenaline. "I didn't want to wait and get cold and take off my shoe and do that sort of stuff," he said. "I thought it could have blown or anything like that, so I thought I'd just go out there and try and serve it out."
Kyrgios was playing in his first tournament since the Australian Open and just his second match since a back injury sidelined him through February. He defeated Denis Kudla easily in his opening match but found the lively conditions during Sunday's day session tough to handle. After the scan results are in, he will reassess his fitness before next week's Sony Open in Miami.
"I'm looking at the positives. My second match back from my back injury, and to compete with a player like Grigor and have the chance to serve the match out, it wasn't too bad of a day."