Tomic just can’t be both­ered

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - SPORTS -

LON­DON — Af­ter all the hard work and ded­i­ca­tion it takes to get to Wimbledon, at least one player can’t be both­ered to ac­tu­ally try to win.

Bernard Tomic, a 24-yearold Aus­tralian who reached the quar­ter­fi­nals at the All Eng­land Club in 2011, said on Tues­day he “just couldn’t find any mo­ti­va­tion” to com­pete this year.

“I felt a lit­tle bit bored out there, to be com­pletely hon­est with you,” Tomic said af­ter los­ing to Mis­cha Zverev 6-4, 6-3, 6-4 on Court 14.

“I feel hold­ing a tro­phy or, you know, do­ing well, it doesn’t sat­isfy me any­more,” he added.

“It’s not there. I couldn’t care less if I make a fourthround US Open or I lose (in the) first round. To me, ev­ery­thing is the same. I’m go­ing to play an­other 10 years, and I know af­ter my ca­reer I won’t have to work again.”

Tomic has won three ti­tles in his ca­reer, the first in Syd­ney in 2013. He then won con­sec­u­tive ti­tles in Bo­gota, Colom­bia, in 2014 and 2015.

He has not ad­vanced as far as the quar­ter­fi­nals at a Grand Slam event since los­ing to even­tual cham­pion No­vak Djokovic in 2011 — when at 18 he be­came the youngest man to reach the fi­nal eight at Wimbledon since Boris Becker de­fended his ti­tle in 1986.

Tomic, who reached a high of No 17 in the world rank­ings in Jan­uary 2016, en­tered Wimbledon ranked No 59 af­ter reach­ing the quar­ter­fi­nals in East­bourne, where he beat Zverev 6-3, 6-2 last week in the sec­ond round.

“Some weeks I play well and beat a bunch of play­ers and do su­per well in tour­na­ments ... but now I just can’t seem to find, like, the com­mit­ment to work hard, to en­joy play­ing and to lift tro­phies,” Tomic said. Zverev was unim­pressed. “It kind of made it al­most tougher for me, be­cause I didn’t know what to ex­pect, be­cause be­tween points he was walk­ing slowly, and he def­i­nitely acted like some­thing was wrong,” said the Ger­man.

“But then he would still, you know — if the ball was within reach, he would still hit it hard, es­pe­cially with the fore­hand, place it well, and hit a lot of win­ners.”

Zverev fin­ished with 18 aces, com­pared to Tomic’s four. He also had 11 fewer un­forced er­rors than Tomic, who com­mit­ted 25.

“I feel like Bernie has been play­ing Wimbledon since he was about 11,” said Thanasi Kokki­nakis, an Aus­tralian who lost to Juan Martin del Potro in his first-round match.

“Maybe he’s bored. I’m not sure. I do know he’s tal­ented and hope­fully he gets it to­gether.”

Af­ter ac­knowl­edg­ing his lack of in­ter­est, Tomic was asked whether he would give back his prize money be­cause of his per­for­mance — a ques­tion he quickly shot down.

He also dis­agreed with a sug­ges­tion that he didn’t give his best ef­fort against Zverev.

“I do feel a bit of guilt and maybe I could have played four or five sets, but in my opin­ion he played well and I was just play­ing ter­ri­ble and I just couldn’t find any rhythm. He de­served to win,” said Tomic.

ALAS­TAIR GRANT / AP

Bernard Tomic said he was ‘bored’ dur­ing his loss to Mis­cha Zverev on Tues­day.

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