Thanasi Kokkinakis recalls beating Ernests Gulbis in Australian Open thriller

Thanasi Kokkinakis, 25, recalled the Ernests Gulbis win at the Australian Open and admitted it’s the match he will never forget. 

Kokkinakis edged out Gulbis 5-7 6-0 1-6 7-6 (2) 8-6 in the 2015 Australian Open first round. 

“I’ve never felt energy like that for me ever, it’s unbelievable. I had something similar the year before, but that match was something I’ll never forget. The goosebumps and chills I get even thinking about that match. It was absurd having some rowdy Aussies and Greeks and everything else just banging on the sides to how it happened, saving match points and then winning in five sets in four hours, wearing a ridiculous kit, looking like a tennis ball. Everything about that made sense and it was just a lot of fun,” Kokkinakis told the Australian Open.

Kokkinakis stayed up late 

Kokkinakis stayed up late after beating Gulbis and he lost to Sam Groth in the second round. 

“In hindsight, I wish I could have recovered a little better and not been on my phone and eating Greek food at like 4am. I might have given myself a better chance for the next round. But, you know, I was 18 and I was lapping it up. It was good fun. But yeah, hopefully I  can recreate some of those moments in the near future,” Kokkinakis added. 

2015 was the year in which Kokkinakis achieved a career-high ranking of No. 69 in the world. 

Kokkinakis’ rise was slowed by constant injuries. 

“Depression was a real thing. I’d walk into cafes and get really bad anxiety and I was, like, ‘I’ve got to get out of here’,” Kokkinakis said on the ‘Ord neroli Speaking’ in March. 

“I would just be crying in my room for no reason.

“I would get anxiety just going for a walk when there was no one in the vicinity of 100 meters from me. It was weird and I couldn’t really explain it. 

“Over time s**t changed and I just felt more comfortable and felt fine. Started going to the gym again, built myself up physically and that helped me.”

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