Tuesday, May 7, 2013

The Tomic Affair, And A Legend Shows How It's Done

by Savannah

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The New York Times Christopher Clarey has posted the following regarding Bernard Tomic, his father John Tomic, and Thomas Drouet.

In January, in an interview with the French newspaper L’Equipe, Drouet said of John Tomic: ‘‘He gets upset easily. He speaks loudly, but it dies down just as quickly. The shell is hard, but he is truly good on the inside.’’

But in an interview published Tuesday in L’Equipe, Drouet said of John Tomic: ‘‘I want to make it understood that this man is violent and dangerous. Unpredictable, too.’’

Drouet said in the interview that he had also seen John Tomic punch Bernard Tomic, 20, in the head during a training session in Monaco on April 30.

‘‘Bernard was bleeding around the mouth, the teeth, there was blood on the court,’’ Drouet told L’Equipe. ‘‘All that because Bernard had told him that he had had enough of hearing his criticisms. I didn’t intervene as I have read I did other places. Afterward, John took Bernard’s three rackets and destroyed them. Bam. Bam. Bam. A half hour later, he was joking with Bernard.’’

Drouet said he was coming forward to help Bernard Tomic and in the hope that the A.T.P. and International Tennis Federation would ban John Tomic from the circuit.

For now, officials from the A.T.P. tour have revoked John Tomic’s accreditation for the Madrid tournament, where Bernard Tomic, a former Wimbledon quarterfinalist who is currently ranked 53rd, lost in the opening round to Radek Stepanek on Sunday.

John Tomic could not be reached to respond to Drouet’s claims that he had attacked Bernard Tomic in Monaco. Phone messages left with John Tomic’s lawyer, Carmen Dieguez, were not immediately returned.

But at the hearing Monday in Madrid, where John Tomic also appeared, Dieguez said that her client disputed the charges in the altercation with Drouet, and she later told reporters that Tomic had acted in self-defense. Another court hearing was set for next Tuesday.

If John Tomic is found guilty of assault, it could result in a prison term and an extended ban from the tennis tour. That could include the women’s tour. John Tomic’s daughter Sara, 15, is a promising junior player.

‘‘A bit inappropriate to make a comment until all the facts are known and this is played out,’’ said Darren Cahill, an Australian coach and commentator, who knows the Tomic family well. ‘‘If the early reports are accurate, we can only hope the A.T.P. takes an extremely tough position against anything of this nature.’’

A.T.P. officials in Europe said in a statement Monday that the organization was still ‘gathering information. Several prominent figures in Australian tennis called for Bernard Tomic to sever coaching ties with his father.


Drouet said Bernard Tomic had later come to see him at the hospital. ‘‘He told me: ‘I’m sorry. He went too far, It’s over. I don’t want him to come to tournaments anymore,’’’ Drouet told L’Equipe.

Drouet added: ‘‘Bernard has been a victim of his father forever. Many times, I’ve heard Bernard tell John he didn’t want him on the court. After that, it’s difficult for Bernard because he’s only known this way of working. He’s a hostage and he’s developed Stockholm syndrome.’’

As "Karen" rightly indicated there is absolutely NO WAY Tennis Australia didn't know this was happening. Cahill's mealy mouthed "it's inappropriate to make a comment" spiel is bullshit. If he "knows the family well" he knows that John Tomic didn't start punching his son in the face last week. And if he knows, they all know. It's convenient to say let the ATP decide especially when the CEO, a fellow Australian, just passed away. If Drouet, who has been working with Bernard for just six months can talk about Stockholm Syndrome what about those who "know the family well"?

If the so called tennis journalists, an exclusive group that wants no part of bloggers and other lower life forms doesn't pursue this story including asking Cahill how long he's known about this abusive behavior than they will just prove that they're a bunch of hacks who want to be spoon fed what the tours want fans to know.

Serena Replies

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The following was posted on Twitter by @TennisNewsTPN

"I don't really know. I don't have many thoughts. I'm a big Sloane Stephens fan and always have been. I've always said that I think she can be the best in the world. I'll always continue to think that and always be rooting for her. So I really just always wish her ‑ and anyone, really, especially from America the best. We don't have that many American players (smiling), so it's always exciting to see so many young players doing so well."

That, Ms Stephens, is how a champion, a legend handles the press. Hopefully one day you will earn the right to be called a champion. Now get to work on your game and let the big girls play.


Sloane Stephens ‏@sloanetweets 5m
Guilty of being naive. Much respect 4 @serenawilliams , a champ & the GOAT. We spoke, we're good. ONWARD! #lifelessons

Life lessons indeed. Next time listen to your mother!


Randy Burgess said...

As with all violence involving players & coaches etc., my position is that criminal charges should be pursued in this case as they would (or wouldn't) against any citizen.

Whatever the ATP does is almost immaterial compared to that. It is all too easy to remember similar incidents where athletes & coaches did harm to others and persons in power inside the sports-industrial complex covered for them. But at the same time, coverups of domestic violence (including child abuse) are routine in daily life outside of sports. Not just spouses but police, churches, and entire communities participate in denial.

As for Serena and Sloane . . . what a non-story. As a fan I've never expected Serena to be an angel. I'm glad I'm not a beat sports journalist - you have to crank copy continually, including much tedious drivel you would prefer to ignore but can't because the pack already is running with it.

Karen said...

Cahill needs to take a seat. He knows. They all knew. This was nothing new about Tomic. The signs were all there. Not too long ago his son asked the chair umpire at a match to have his father removed. This young man is under so much pressure both from TA and from his family. Tomic Snr. needs to be removed and the apologists need to take a seat. I can only imagine what the little sister is going through, not to mention the mother.

One thing you have to say about the WTA, after having so many issues relating to players being abused, they took decisive action when there were reports of Rezai being abused by her father. They banned him from the Tour & he has never shown his face again.

You are also quite correct regarding the mealy mouthed journos that cover this sport. Thank goodness for people like TPN and other sites that are not afraid to talk about what needs to be talked about in tennis.