Bernard Tomic says he is determined to revive his career and believes he has “one more chance to get back to the top”.
The former world No. 17 has plummeted down the rankings in recent years due to a lack of activity on the ATP Tour and poor results.
He has often caused controversy with his antics on the court as well as his run-ins with the media, which include gloating about his wealth after losing in the Australian Open qualifiers in 2018.
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But with the 2022 Australian Open just a month away, Tomic has revealed that he wants to give tennis one more shot.
“I’m going to try and turn this around and give myself the best chance in the next couple of years. I’ve got one more chance at this. I’ll try and do it for myself,” he told the Gold Coast Bulletin.
“Now it’s all about getting it right and having a good crack at the next five or six years and trying to get back to the top. I miss that sort of feeling.”
Tomic’s career highlights so far include four titles on the ATP Tour and a run to the quarter-finals of Wimbledon in 2011.
But he has also faced accusations of tanking during tournaments and was criticised for holding his racquet backwards on match point against Fabio Fognini in 2016.
He says he came close to retiring a few years ago but is now “bored” without tennis in his life.
“I stopped playing two-and-a-half years ago. I went ‘I’m over it’. I had outside distractions,” he said.
“But I’m kind of bored of that too now to be honest. I had too much success at a young age. Everything got to me. The travel, day in, day out tournaments. By age 25 I was tired and starting saying dumb s*** in the media.
“There are so many things I should not have said, should not have done. But I did.”
Tomic added that winning four matches in a row at last year’s Australian Open ignited a “fire” inside him.
“I was probably ready to stop (before that). I don’t need money any more. But I started winning matches. I got a bit of fire going into me.”
The 29-year-old is currently recovering from a finger injury and has hired a fitness coach to aid his comeback. He has posted a hype video on social media showing him boxing and lifting weights.
“I’ve had a lot of hate in my life. But I can’t give up. You don’t think I see the hate comments? It hurts,” he says in the video.
“In the past I used to let it get to me and react out of stupidity. But now I’m using it as fuel. I’m back ... I’m hungry, and I’m ready. No one can stop me now, but me.
“I’m training, I’m sweating, I’m pushing, I’m fired up. Whatever it takes to get back on top. Hard work pays off. I’ve put my blood, sweat and tears into this sport.
I have come back before. It’s time to set the record straight.
Tomic is now ranked 254th in the world and his last match was at an ATP 250 event in Kazakhstan in September, which he lost due to retirement.
His only main-draw victory on the tour this season was at the Australian Open, when he came through qualifying and beat Yuichi Sugita in the first round.
The Australian Open starts in Melbourne on January 17.
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