Nick Kyrgios lauded Lleyton Hewitt for his support during Wimbledon and the Aussie legend has returned serve.

Davis Cup captain Lleyton Hewitt has told Nick Kyrgios he can play singles or doubles for Australia and he wants the Aussie “weapon” to play for his country again.

Hewitt, the last Australian male to win Wimbledon in 2002, said he told Kyrgios, who was beaten in the final by Novak Djokovic last weekend, that he should be proud of not just making the final but everything he did during the grass court season.

Kyrgios lauded Hewitt for his unwavering support before the final, calling out some other Australian greats for “tearing me down”.

Ahead of his induction into the International Tennis Hall of Fame on Saturday, Hewitt said his role as Davis Cup captain limited his options to be with Kyrgios on a more regular basis.

But he definitely wants him to play for Australia. Kyrgios, who last played Davis Cup tennis in November 2019, declined the opportunity to do so earlier this year

“We’d absolutely love to have him playing for us,” Hewitt was quoted by Reuters as saying ahead of his induction in Rhode Island.

“We’re a much stronger side if he’s available and can play for us. And he’s an option for singles and doubles matches, which is important in this format.

“To have that kind of weapon at your disposal, we’d certainly want him to be part of that if possible.”

Hewitt said he reiterated to Kyrgios just how much he had achieved at Wimbledon and hoped he had the fire to keep going and build on his best Grand Slam result.

“Deep down, he’s still pretty disappointed to come so close but not win,” Hewitt said.

“But as I told him, he should be extremely proud of the performances over the last two weeks and throughout the whole grass-court season.

“Everyone knows the kind of firepower and game style that he has and what he’s capable of doing. He just has to go out there and keep believing in himself.”

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