Tennis: Bernard Tomic accuses Tennis Australia of 'neglect'

Bernard Tomic leaving the court after losing his match against Novak Djokovic at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London.
Bernard Tomic leaving the court after losing his match against Novak Djokovic at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London.PHOTO: REUTERS

LONDON (AFP) - Australia's Bernard Tomic launched an extraordinary tirade at Tennis Australia on Friday accusing the ruling body of neglecting him.

Tomic was knocked out of Wimbledon by defending champion Novak Djokovic but most of his post-match news conference was consumed by a lengthy rant.

The 22-year-old said that he had changed his mind and would play the Davis Cup quarter-final against Kazakhstan later this month after initially threatening not to make himself available.

But he said he was doing it out of respect for his teammates rather than for the sport's officials. He even managed to insult former Davis Cup captain Rafter, one of the country's sports icons.

Said Tomic: "People think I'm at war with Pat Rafter. It's not true. Pat is a nice guy.

"If the Australian public don't know Pat, he's a good actor, he's well-spoken, always prepared and knows what to say. He's prepped by Tennis Australia to know what to say."

Tomic also accused his country's tennis authorities of penny-pinching, claiming he was charged for practising on their courts.

He added: "I go up to the Pat Rafter Arena (in Brisbane) and practice there. Went up there, organized. Ten days before, nine days before. Practice and stuff. Guy comes to me, you have to pay the court and balls."

Tomic said that Tennis Australia should have supported him when he underwent hip surgery after the Australian Open.

"There has been no lack of support towards me. All of a sudden, things started changing after I had that surgery," he said.

"I didn't get one phone call from Tennis Australia, Can we help you, Bernard? Can we do this? Do you need something? You know, can we give you something?"