AUSSIE tennis stars Bernard Tomic and Nick Kyrgios have once again hit the headlines for the wrong reasons, and fans aren’t happy.
Nick Kyrgios blew up at a spectator, sending a mocking wave in their direction after telling them to “shut the f*** up”. The controversy came after he blasted a chair umpire for being “biased as s***” during last week’s Marseille Open.
Kyrgios’ on-court antics sent the 21-year-old to the forefront of tennis conversation. But it was his counterpart who really stirred the pot.
Bernard Tomic, playing in a singles match at the Mexican Open, retired after losing the first set. Citing “unbearable heat” despite temperatures sitting at 28-degrees Celsius throughout the match.
The 24-year-old withdrew from the match against USA’s Donald Young before consulting a trainer. Outraging tennis fans who claimed his heart was no longer in the contest.
To put another spanner in the works, Tomic was back playing doubles with Italian Paolo Lorenzi two hours later.
Tomic’s disappointing display comes barely a week after bombing out of an ATO Tour event in Florida, capitulating to Belgium’s Steve Darcis in a performance many described as “lazy”. Tomic was sent packing after giving up on a number of returns sent back by the world No. 57, eventually bowing out of the match 3-6 6-1 6-4.
Tomic’s withdrawal in Mexico generated a wave of controversy in Australia with fans and experts voicing their opinions on the latest scandal to envelop the 24-year-old.
SEN tennis guru Brett Phillips called for harsher measures to be taken on Kyrgios and Tomic, suggesting fines on the players’ match fees are too soft for millionaire tennis stars.
“It shouldn’t be a monetary fine for these blokes, because money means nothing for them. They are earning millions,” Phillips said Wednesday.
“It has to be an extended time off the tour. If you’re not giving your best it should be a straight forward process. In the case today he hasn’t even asked for the trainer to come out, he sought no medical assistance.”
“If you at least have a trainer that comes out and you look like you’re under duress and you could be, then fair enough … but he’s done this so many times, I think this is his sixth retirement.”
Tomic has now lost in the first round in four of his past five tournaments in what has been a disappointing downwards spiral to begin 2017.
Phillips suggested the 24-year-old’s future in the tennis world could be in jeopardy after yet another embarrassing bungle, saying his approach to the game needs a severe tweak.
“He doesn’t exude the sporting values at the elite level that every other athlete in this country does. You just go out and give your best, but that doesn’t seem to go through the mind of Bernard Tomic.
“I don’t know where he goes from here.”