Sport

Nick Kyrgios, Patty Mills nominated for 'The Don' award

They captivated a nation at Wimbledon and the NBA, now Canberra sports stars Nick Kyrgios and Patty Mills have been rewarded by being nominated for the Australian Sports Hall of Fame's 'The Don' award. 

The duo were among seven nominees for the honour, which recognises the athlete who has inspired the nation most over the last year. 

Kyrgios has been anointed Australia tennis' 'next big thing' after shocking world No.1 Rafael Nadal on his way to a quarter-final appearance at Wimbledon. 

The 19-year-old also made the third round of the recent US Open, which has put him on the cusp of entering the world's top 50. 

"I'm pumped to be nominated for the Don Award, it's a prestigious award," Kyrgios said.

"I've had a great year in my first full year on tour, and to be recognised for nomination is a great feeling and a great achievement itself.

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"I am sure there are several other quality individuals who have enjoyed a successful 2014 up for nomination too, so thanks to the guys for nominating me."

Despite playing with a shoulder injury which would later require surgery, point guard Mills became the first Australian of indigenous heritage to win an NBA title with San Antonio Spurs. 

The highlight was his 14-point surge during the third quarter of game five of the NBA Finals against Miami, which the Spurs won to clinch the trophy. 

Named in honour of Australian cricket's greatest player Don Bradman, Kyrgios and Mills will compete with three-time winter Olympian Lydia Lassila, athletics stars Sally Pearson and Michael Shelley, Formula One whiz kid Daniel Ricciardo and cricket paceman Mitchell Johnson. 

Mills missed the recent FIBA World Cup for the Australian Boomers through injury, while Kyrgios has cited burnout in deciding to end his breakthrough season earlier than expected. 

The winner will be announced at the Hall of Fame's awards dinner in Melbourne on October 9. 

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