In the debate for biggest jackass in sports (well there really isn’t a debate but just play along), tennis’ representative would clearly be Bernard Tomic.
Tomic is currently ranked 73rd in the world, but has been as high as #17 in January 2016. He has the talent to consistently be ranked near or inside the top 20, but his recent comments and actions have shown he could care less about his ranking, his fans, or really anything else.
Tomic made headlines – and not the ones tennis players normal make – by admitting after his first round loss at Wimbledon earlier this month that he was bored during the match, and used an injury timeout not because he was hurt but because he just wanted to mess with his opponent.
That was just the tip of the iceberg, as controversy never strays very far away from the latest candidate for “tennis brat”. Those comments at Wimbledon cost him a small fine, and his racket sponsor dropped their endorsement with him. But clearly that wasn’t a huge issue, because he kept running his mouth, which is digging himself a hole that he won’t be able to escape.
Some of the gems the 24-year-old from Australia has come out with during recent interviews are:
- Telling young players to not play tennis for a living
- Saying fans shouldn’t spend money to see him play tennis in person, just watch him on TV instead
- Stating that he’s played at 100% sometimes and 30% effort sometimes, so in general he’s maybe played to 50% of his capabilities
- Bragging about how much he’s earned by only playing at 50%
- Telling fans that they should just go back to dreaming about the houses and cars that he can go purchase whenever he wants
- Following that up recently by saying he didn’t regret those comments, and that he just said them to piss people off
- Stating that performing well in tournaments does not excite or drive him
- Saying tennis is just a job to him, and he’s trapped doing something that he doesn’t like
Personally, I love when players speak their minds and don’t sugarcoat answers in interviews. I’m so tired of hearing the same responses to questions. I appreciate the honesty, but come on man. We know you make a lot of money, and you could at least sound somewhat appreciative of what you have thanks to the god-given talent in your 6’5” frame.
Telling kids that they shouldn’t play tennis just because you don’t enjoy it (though you do seem to enjoy the money you make without really trying) is such a dick move. Bragging about how much money you’ve made at half effort is so stupid, because if the money was really that important to you that would be an incentive to actually try harder. I mean the more you win the more you earn, which isn’t a really hard concept to figure out. And with that extra money you can buy more of those houses and cars that all the other peons, aka your “fans”, are just dreaming about.
I’m sure some people would see the comment about being trapped doing something he doesn’t like for a job and feel bad for him, but that’s a load of b.s. too. I hate to inform Bernie but most of us fans are doing something we don’t really love for a living. We are doing it to make ends meet, and we occasionally scrap together enough money to go see guys like him play the sport that we love to watch. He’s made enough money that he doesn’t need to do this for a living anymore, so why waste his and our time by playing a sport he doesn’t truly love or appreciate? We won’t miss him, in fact, we won’t remember him at all once he goes away. And hopefully it’s someplace far, far away.
I really do hope Tomic figures things out, because he plays a different style of tennis and is actually enjoyable to watch when he tries. Bernie can just look at his mate Nick Kyrgios, who used to be the biggest tennis brat until Tomic stole the title from him. Kyrgios hasn’t acted up in a while (except for partying with a couple lovely young ladies after withdrawing from Wimbledon), he actually seems like he cares, and unfortunately now that his head is in the game, his body is deserting him.
Contrary to Kyrgios, Tomic’s body is not deserting him. In fact, it’s probably the only healthy thing about him. His mind is clearly gone, his mouth has no filter, and his soul is non-existent. And soon his fans, his career, and his money will follow suit and be non-existent. Which won’t be a great loss to anyone except Tomic, who will eventually realize he’s pissing away his career and his life by being a total brat and the biggest jackass in tennis.
Written by: Adam Belue (@albinomamba44)
I was born and raised in Fall River, MA and I currently write Bruins and tennis blogs for Couch Guy Sports, cover baseball and hockey for CLNS Media, have an internship writing with the New Bedford Bay Sox of the New England Collegiate Baseball League (NECBL), and work in retail. My two loves are the Green Bay Packers and the Bruins.. along with sleeping, napping, watching terrible reality shows, and figuring out new ways to lose at fantasy football.