Australian Open 2021: The rebranding of Nick Kyrgios


“However for the very prime tier of marketability, you want a mix of charisma and constant domination on the court docket.

“Roger, Rafa, Naomi, Serena, Tiger, Lebron, Ronaldo – all of them have that in widespread.

All of Nick Kyrgios’s emotions were on show on Wednesday night.

All of Nick Kyrgios’s feelings had been on present on Wednesday evening.Credit score:Eddie Jim, Getty, AP

“Nick’s world will change if he wins a grand slam – and I imagine he can do it.”

Forecasting a surge in model reputation previous the likes of Federer and Nadal is daring however Duguid is aware of extra about promoting athletes to the world than virtually every other agent on the planet.

He’s the person that helped information Naomi Osaka to an eyewatering $48 million AUD in sponsorships final 12 months.

Duguid took Osaka’s model to the Asian market and the Japanese famous person signed with 15 firms, together with Nissan Motor, Shiseido and Yonex. He maximised the eye on Osaka after she took a highly publicised stance promoting racial equity on the US Open final 12 months, after which received the event.

Kyrgios preferred what he noticed and determined to make some vital change to his administration, approaching the American in July final 12 months.

Duguid agreed to signify Kyrgios and instantly engaged the providers of revered Australian advertising adviser Tristan Hay, who’s well-known via his work in Australian boxing, the NRL, the NBA and Main League Baseball.

Within the six months since, the world No.47 has earned extra off the court docket than he did in any of the eight prior years of his skilled profession.

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Kia, PlayStation, Uber Eats, Previous El Paso and Name of Responsibility all got here calling with endorsement offers within the final six months – a interval through which he wasn’t on the court docket. Kyrgios has maintained a powerful relationship with Nike and Yonex, too.

“Our method centered on telling Nick’s story a bit of bit higher than it had been instructed up to now,” Hay stated. “Nick is a very personable man who has a transparent viewpoint. It’s not a PR job or attempting to tailor or redefine Nick.

“It was extra about offering the best channels for Nick to inform his story. He doesn’t wish to be manufactured or tailor-made to suit a model.”

Kygrios barely performed in 2020 however his off-court picture appeared to change considerably.

A divisive and temperamental participant, Kyrgios earned reward for elevating over $90,000 in a bushfire attraction on the Australian Open, earlier than the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic noticed him tackle the function as world tennis’ critic-in-chief of players he believed were being selfish throughout the well being disaster. Novak Djokovic was continually in Kygrios’ sights, and remains so.

Having come throughout beforehand as sullen and insular, a maturing Kyrgios confirmed the Australian public one other aspect his character.

Nick Kyrgios began to sway public opinion after he criticised tennis rivals for being selfish during COVID.

Nick Kyrgios started to sway public opinion after he criticised tennis rivals for being egocentric throughout COVID.Credit score:Getty

The explanations for his return to reputation with sponsors – having been dumped by Bonds and Malaysian Airways up to now – are three-fold, based on Duguid.

“First, as a consequence of COVID the endorsement market has truly shrunk on the entire however has gone extra prime heavy, which has benefited Nick,” Duguid stated.

“There’s nonetheless a ferocious urge for food to work with probably the most charismatic stars.

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“Secondly, Nick has made a run of excellent selections – most notably being the voice of cause on COVID inside the tennis group.

“Thirdly, this 12 months has seen manufacturers need much more than ever to work with athletes which are genuine – what you see is what you get from Nick and that’s what sells, particularly in difficult occasions after we’re all in it collectively.”

Kyrgios’ shares will proceed to soar if he can upset Dominic Thiem on Friday evening.

The pair have solely confronted off as soon as, in 2015, when the Australian retired midway via the primary set.

Within the years since, Thiem has morphed into the inheritor to Rafael Nadal’s clay court docket throne. He additionally broke via for a maiden grand slam win ultimately 12 months’s US Open.

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