Top 10 Bernard Tomic controversies:
John McEnroe has suggested that Tomic tanked – did not give his best effort – in his second-round match at the US Open against Andy Roddick. “Tomic is teeing it up. It looks like the tank job. This is a shame. You don’t like to see this. I like to see Andy win but, other than that, it’s poor. A well-deserved beating,” McEnroe said on American television. Tomic, though, said he had been nervous: “It’s difficult the first time to be in front of 22,000 people. It’s a different feeling to being on the back courts to playing on the biggest stage in the world, biggest country in the world. I wasn’t looking up, that’s for sure. The more I looked up, the more I realised how many people were there.”
Tennis Australia cut his funds when Tomic was a junior over suspicions he had “lacked effort” while playing in the boys’ tournament at the French Open.
Tomic locked himself in his house to avoid a confrontation with police over a driving incident. Tomic had claimed to be the victim of police harassment after being pulled over by police on several occasions, but on this occasion, during this year’s Australian Open, he refused to stop his orange sports car. So the police followed him back to his house. “It’s like I killed someone,” Tomic reportedly said, while his father John reportedly called the police’s behaviour “un-Australian”.
Tomic tried to have his father John thrown out of a stadium during a match in Miami this spring. The microphones caught Tomic saying to the umpire: “He’s annoying. I know he’s my father but he’s annoying me. I want him to leave but how’s that possible? If you see him coaching, tell him to be quiet.” When the umpire then issued a code violation for illegal coaching, Tomic junior said: “Thanks.”
There were a few boos at Wimbledon this summer as Tomic walked off court after a first-round defeat to David Goffin (the Australian had been warned for racket abuse during the match).
There aren’t many 17-year-olds who would criticise scheduling decisions at a grand slam. But, at the 2010 Australian Open, Tomic made it clear that he was unhappy he had been asked to play a match which started around 10pm and finished after 2am. “After 1am, 2am, for a 17-year-old to go out and play, it’s difficult. I requested to play during the day, it didn’t happen, and I think it’s ridiculous.”
There was an unfortunate episode during the 2009 Wimbledon Championships when Tomic declined Lleyton Hewitt’s offer of training together.
Most – some 80 per cent – of the Australian public thought that Tomic should not have been given a wild card into last year’s Australian Open. Tomic was supposed to have competed in a wild card play-off for Australians, and the reason he gave for his withdrawal, that he was unwell, was met with some scepticism as he was reportedly spotted practising on the Gold Coast. Even so, Tennis Australia still went ahead and gave Tomic one of their spots.
At a small, low-level tournament in 2008, Tomic gathered his rackets mid-match and suddenly left the court as his father thought his son should protest about the quality of the line-calling. Tomic was suspended for a month by the International Tennis Federation.
Tomic’s father once aggravated Roger Rasheed, Lleyton Hewitt’s then coach, by calling him “a fitness coordinator, not a coach” who had taken Hewitt “from No 2 in the world to No 60″.