Kyrgios’ psychologist Sam Borenstein said that Kyrgios’ mental health led to impulsive and reckless behavior.
Editor’s Note: This story contains alleged reports of domestic violence. If you or someone you know has been a victim of domestic violence, contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or at https://www.thehotline.org/
CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Nick Kyrgios had a history of severe depression, suicidal thoughts and insomnia, a psychologist said in court on Friday, as the Australian tennis star pleaded guilty to pushing a former girlfriend to the ground two years ago.
The 2022 Wimbledon runner-up pleaded guilty in Australian Capital Territory Magistrates Court to assaulting Chiara Passari during a dispute in his hometown of Canberra in January 2021.
Judge Jane Campbell did not record a conviction against Kyrgios, in part because the offense of joint assault was on the lower end of the seriousness spectrum and was not premeditated.
Campbell described it as an act of “stupidity” and “frustration.”
Kyrgios’ psychologist Sam Borenstein said in a written report and telephone testimony that Kyrgios had a history of major depressive episodes and used alcohol and drugs to cope. Kyrgios’ mental health resulted in impulsive and reckless behavior.
His knee injury that month had resulted in mild to moderate symptoms of depression, but his mental health was improving, Borenstein said.
“He’s doing very well,” said Borenstein. “His mental health has improved significantly.
Kyrgios’ lawyers had attempted to dismiss a charge of assault based on events two years earlier on mental health grounds, but the motion was unsuccessful.
In February last year, Kyrgios spoke about his performance at the 2019 Australian Open, saying what appeared to be a positive time in his life was “one of my darkest times”.
“I was lonely, depressed, negative, abusing alcohol, drugs, pushing away family and friends,” he wrote on Instagram. “I felt like there was no one I could talk to or trust. That was the result of not opening up and refusing to lean on loved ones and just gradually push myself to be positive.”
Kyrgios continued to refer to his mental health issues during his runs to the Wimbledon final and US Open quarterfinals.
After ending Daniil Medvedev’s title defense at the US Open last September to reach the quarterfinals, Kyrgios expressed pride in breaking out of “some really difficult situations, mentally” and “some really scary places” off the pitch .
Kyrgios had a career setback last month when he withdrew from the Australian Open with a left knee injury that required arthroscopic surgery.