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“Nick has got an unmatched style, passion, and personality that is unlike any other in the sport”: Osaka signs Kyrgios as first client
Kyrgios says he is excited to work with EVOLVE to continue building on what they have started and push the game of tennis forward.
From practice partners to business partners. That’s how the relationship between Naomi Osaka and Nick Kyrgios has evolved over the past few months. The pair, among the most popular players in the game today, got together for a practice session during the American hardcourt stretch in the United States in March this year when the Australian even gave Osaka some tips to improve her serve.
A few months later, Kyrgios was named as the first athlete to sign with EVOLVE, the sports agency that Osaka has co-founded with Stuart Duguid. Duguid will represent Kyrgios for his on- and off-court ventures in partnership with the Australian’s manager Daniel Horsfall.
Kyrgios may be ranked only No 45 in the world but there is no doubt that he remains one of the biggest box office draws in the game outside of the Big 3 in the men’s game. He also has six ATP singles tiles and made a captivating run to the Australian Open men’s doubles title in January with countryman Thanasi Kokkinakis.
Speaking to Boardroom, Osaka, a four-time Grand Slam singles champion and the world’s highest earning female athlete in sports, said, “Kyrgios embodies the types of athletes we want to work with at EVOLVE. 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.”
Nick Kyrgios looked to just as excited to be working with Osaka and Duguid. “When I learned that Stuart and Naomi were starting an agency focused on supporting athletes like me, it made complete sense to join. I have consistently tried to do things differently throughout my career and bring my entire personality to the game of tennis. I’m excited to work with Stuart and Naomi to continue building on what we’ve started and push the game of tennis forward.”
Duduid, Osaka’s agent at IMG, was lavish in his praise for his new client, calling him the most talented and entertaining player on the tour. “Nick is the most talented and entertaining tennis player on the tour, bar none. His energy is infectious. And 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 in a second. For Gen Z and younger, he is absolutely the icon.”