Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Rafter unleashes on 'disgraceful' Tomic

Updated September 03, 2012 15:06:08

Davis Cup captain Pat Rafter has opened serve on Bernard Tomic's work ethic following his much-publicised exit from the US Open.

The 19-year-old rising star was crushed 6-3, 6-4, 6-0 by Andy Roddick in the second round, prompting allegations from American legend John McEnroe that he had tanked.

Tomic was then involved in an angry exchange with reporters on the subject.

Rafter, busy preparing for next month's Davis Cup World Group qualifying play-off against Germany, says the teen's effort in New York was disgraceful.

"I threw out the big D word to him yesterday - disgraceful," the two-time US Open champion told Fox Sports.

"There is no use sugar-coating something. He has to do the work.

"I'm sick and tired of tip-toeing around it and I think everyone else is as well.

"We have two weeks of Davis Cup coming up and that is hard work and hard training.

"So he has to pull his socks up and be part of this team."

Tour veteran Lleyton Hewitt, who was bundled out of the US Open in a four-set defeat to Spaniard David Ferrer this morning, plans to bend Tomic's ear before the Davis Cup tie.

He says he has recently become a sounding board for Tomic.

"I think he does listen to me quite a bit, even when he has spoken about things, whether he was playing Roddick or when his game was a little bit off during the Olympics when he was down on confidence a little bit," Hewitt said.

"That's what I'm there for. [I've] been around a long time now.

"We've practised quite a bit together at most tournaments we've played the last couple years.

"He's a unique player. His ball striking is unique. Some of his shot selection is unique.

"There have been matches, probably more so at the Australian Open, that he has been able to turn around because of that."

Tomic rallied from two sets down to defeat Fernando Verdasco in the first round at this year's Australian Open and battled through a five-set thriller against Alexandr Dolgopolov before falling to Roger Federer in the round of 16.

"The Verdasco match, for example, [it] looked like he was struggling there for a while and he was able to turn that around," Hewitt said.

"Even against Dolgopolov in the Aussie Open as well.

"That's him and his personality a little bit.

"I would have thought it would have gone a little bit better against Andy.

"Hopefully he can get it together."


Tags: tennis, sport, australia

First posted September 03, 2012 13:06:05

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