Tennis Australia chief slams Tomic

2016-05-11 07:26
Bernard Tomic (AFP)

Sydney - Tennis Australia chief Steve Healy has labelled Bernard Tomic disrespectful and said Nick Kyrgios was picking unnecessary fights with Olympic officials as the debate over who should represent the country at the Rio Games continued on Wednesday.

Kyrgios and Tomic are the country's top ranked men's players but were both warned last weekend by Australia's chef de mission for the Games, Kitty Chiller, that they were among a group of athletes whose behaviour was being monitored.

Tomic had been lambasted for holding his racket by the strings and not offering a shot when facing match point at last week's Madrid Open, responding to criticism by saying: "Would you care if you were 23 and worth over $10 million?"

Chiller described the incident involving the world number 22 as "appalling" and TA President Healy said he was also concerned.

"I think it's a disrespect for the game and his opponent, and that's the thing that I think troubles us," he told The Age newspaper.

"Bernard does some good things and then he disrespects the game. I think it's a bit of an insult to the fans and to the opponent when you don't try all the way through the match.

"He's making progress in terms of his ranking, his performances and so on, and then he just does something that basically unwinds all the good he does, and so you shake your head in disbelief."

Kyrgios' response to Chiller's warning came via a cheeky tweet and then at the Italian Open, where he said if Australia did not want their best players at the Rio Games "then so be it".

Healy said the world number 20, who combines a rare tennis talent with a reputation for firing insults at fellow players, umpires and fans, had been "pretty good" this year but thought the 21-year-old should not have responded to Chiller.

"It's unnecessary," he said. "I don't know why he wouldn't just let it go. I wish he wouldn't do that. I think he creates a rod for his own back.

"I just don't think he needs to get into that sort of war. Why didn't he just say 'yeah, I acknowledge that's part of the responsibility of representing Australia'? Or say nothing."

The deadline for nominations for the team, which then have to approved by the Australian Olympic Committee, is June 30 and Healy said they would be discussed by the TA board next week.

Read more on:    tennis

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Sport Talk

Live scoring

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Which is your favourite Grand Slam of the year?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.