Nick Kyrgios has the shots, the power, the athleticism. The 18-year-old has enough bling to make Dennis Lillee and his bouncing-gold-bat-on-hairy-chest-look seem almost understated, and enough of the showman about him to declare boldly in a pre-match tweet: ''Atmosphere sounds sick right now on MCA, get me out there guys this is my crowd''.

The between-the-legs ball bounce before his first serve is as much Harlem as tennis globetrotter; audacious shot-making includes jump backhand winners from nowhere and resembles the type of watchability that makes a Gael Monfils show so hard to resist. And predict.

Kyrgios has the ''X factor'', commentator Jim Courier noted, along with a monster second serve that straddled the fine line between brave and stupid. Along with the flamboyant mohawk and big diamond stud is the swagger of the supremely confident. Attitude? Plenty of it.

What Kyrgios does not have, not yet, is the body he needs to deliver him to where he is headed because, naturally, the rangy teen still lacks strength and endurance, as well as the experience that helps to guard against further bouts of the cramping he experienced against Benoit Paire in a five-set loss that was so much more. After all, as Wally Masur points out, not everyone can be Rafael Nadal, who was a man-boy winning French Open titles at Kyrgios' age.

''They're still years away,'' said Tennis Australia's physical performance manager, Aaron Kellett, when asked about the time it will take to get Kyrgios and his 17-year-old mate Thanasi Kokkinakis close to physical maturity, while managing bodies that have already proven to be worryingly injury-prone.

How many years? ''How long is a piece of string?'' smiles Kellett.

''They've got heavy competition demands, they've got challenges of maintaining their competitive schedules, but also building in training bloc opportunties where we are able to keep chipping away at the physical development we know is really critical in this sport, where the average age in the top 100 keeps blowing out.

''Certainly, Nick really committed himself post-US Open and coming home with that elbow injury to really get some improvement in his physical capacities, and his effort and his workrate and his commitment I really can't fault. Both of those boys have really recognised the importance of that aspect of their development.''

So that will, should, come, along with improved shot selection that is understandably excitable at times.

Kyrgios left a Davis Cup-like crowd on Margaret Court Arena gasping at times on the way to a two-sets-to-love lead against the 27th-seeded Paire in extreme Thursday night heat that eventually took its toll, despite Kyrgios' admirable determination not to surrender.

Some of it was breathtaking. There was a backhand return down the line on a break point, celebrated with arms spread theatrically in a crowd embrace. A forehand winner down 15-30 in the third set that Courier said could not be taught - ''you either have it or you don't''. And, down set point in the first tie-breaker, an astonishing half-volley forehand crosscourt off his shoelaces. Wow.

The obvious question: should Bernard Tomic be worried, or Australia excited? Both. According to Courier, the Ks are the standout pair emerging from any country right now. ''Kyrgios and Kokkinakis are the best two out there in their age group,'' he said on Channel Seven. ''Australia has a nice spot at the poker table.''

And, athletically, the loose-limbed Boston Celtics basketball fanatic has been dealt some handy cards. Hoops came first for the Canberra son of a Greek-born father and Malaysian mother, and, if he could choose one sport to play, just for fun, basketball would still be his preference. But Roger Federer was one of his idols growing up, and tennis his career sport of choice since the age of 13 or 14.

Already, his junior and early senior results have been exceptional, and the world No.183's potential apparent for all to see. Kyrgios' website crashed under the weight of 250,000-plus hits in 12 hours on Friday, after a huge social media buzz that included admiring K2-related tweets from the likes of noted coaches Paul Annacone and Patrick Mouratoglou and reigning women's champion Victoria Azarenka.

The word from some in local circles is perhaps, eventually, Kokkinakis - one year younger, and applauded from the court by an impressed Nadal in the afternoon - might even be better. But it is the fact that Australia finally has two such promising young talents, as well as Ash Barty among the women, that matters most.

For now, let's treat them as a package deal, and Kyrgios as a young star not so much born as spectacularly confirmed. What has long been heard has now been seen.