Kokkinakis’s bag goes missing ahead of Rio
Thanasi Kokknakis has arrived in Rio - yet finds himself without any racquets to practise with.
Thanasi Kokkinakis’s plans to hit a few balls was changed to hitting the phones as the Australian tennis star searched for a racquet to borrow to start his Olympic preparations in Rio.
Kokkinakis hoped to practise after arriving in Brazil on Monday however his racquet bag went missing somewhere between Melbourne, Dubai and Rio.
“They told me it should arrive late tomorrow afternoon so it’s a bit disappointing,” the 20-year-old said.
“I’ll see what I can scrounge up to hit with and make do … it will be like the junior days.”
There have already been numerous reports of visitors to the Games having their bags go missing in transit while flight delays and cancellations have also been commonplace in the lead-up to the event.
Kokkinakis said he only decided last week that he was fit to play in Rio after his slow recovery forced him to miss the first three Grand Slam tournaments of the year.
“It wasn’t looking good for the rest of the year with my shoulder but then out of nowhere it started to feel a lot better,” he said.
“I can’t do any more harm so I’m looking forward to getting out and playing.”
The South Australian said he didn’t know what to make of his medal chances but admitted his time out would likely count against him.
“I’ll try to be competitive. It’s 10 months out without a tournament and I’ve never been out that long so I don’t know what to expect,” he said.
“I’m hitting the ball well in practice but when matches start everything’s a lot different.”