Canberra's Nick Kyrgios plays Matthew Ebden in the opening round of the Brisbane International on Sunday. Photo: Getty Images
Australian Davis Cup coach Josh Eagle says a ''cautious approach'' will be taken with Canberra tennis ace Nick Kyrgios, who faces a race to be fit for the Australian Open in two weeks.
Having finally overcome a niggling elbow injury, Kyrgios pulled out of the Brisbane International on Monday night after his right shoulder stiffened up after training on Friday.
Initial fears were that he had bursitis - the inflammation of a small sac of fluid in the joint - but he returned to Melbourne to see medical staff with more to be known on Wednesday.
Canberra tennis star Nick Kyrgios. Photo: Katherine Griffiths
''The extent of the injury is a bit unknown at this stage,'' Eagle said.
''He's back in Melbourne now and hoping to see a specialist later this afternoon and hopefully he can get to the bottom of it and see if it's serious or not and where it's at.''
Kyrgios took to social media to express his disappointment.
After starting the year at No. 840, he climbed into the top 200, beating Radek Stepanek in his French Open debut and qualifying for the US Open along the way. Despite not playing since October, he's still No. 182 and touted as a future top 10 player.
Kyrgios was looking forward to a big summer. ''Head up. Of course it hurts, but I will be back, no doubt,'' he tweeted on Monday night.
And then on Tuesday: ''Back in Melbourne. I know what I have to do, but it's hard to move on.''
The 18-year-old was hoping for a breakout summer, his first in Australia at senior level, after a brilliant 2013.
He was granted a wildcard for Brisbane and was hoping solid showings there and at the International Sydney tournament would culminate in a wildcard for the Australian Open, which starts in Melbourne on January 13.
Eagle said if Kyrgios was given the all clear he would play in the Sydney qualifiers on Saturday. But if there was any chance the former Daramalan student could do long-term damage to his shoulder he wouldn't be risked.
''We're hoping it doesn't [derail his summer], we're hoping he can get it to settle down in the coming few days before Sydney next week,'' Eagle said.
''But if it's not right he won't play. He's still young and we're certainly taking a cautious approach with how we deal with it. We certainly wouldn't be pushing him or rushing him in to play if he's not right. For Nick it's about getting an eight-10-year career and getting himself physically fit and healthy.''
Kyrgios is part of a new wave of Australian talent emerging, along with his friend Thanasi Kokkinakis. They both struggled with injury last year, with Kokkinakis suffering stress fractures in his back during the Australian Open boy's singles final against Kyrgios.
Eagle said Tennis Australia was mindful not to push the youngsters too hard too early.