ONE of the people who helped Pat Cash achieve Wimbledon glory, says Bernard Tomic is at a similar tipping point that Cash once confronted, and that a re-examination of why he plays the game is needed urgently.
A year that cannot seem to end quickly enough for Tomic took another dip when he was involved in an altercation with a friend during birthday celebrations in Surfers Paradise. Police were called to intervene when Tomic, 20, and a friend were fighting in a spa early on Monday morning.
Tomic in trouble... again
Tennis star Bernard Tomic has another run-in with the police for his involvement in a brawl after a night of partying, in the same week he is due to face a magistrate's court on driving charges.
The incident came a week before Tomic is due to appear before a magistrate on driving charges stemming from a run-in with police on Australia Day when he allegedly refused to pull over for police.
On the court, the world No. 48 has also endured a disappointing year, which included being reproached by Wimbledon officials for a racquet-smashing tantrum, ticking off a reporter when asked what he thought of John McEnroe's criticism that he had tanked a match, and recently admitted he had only given 85 per cent during a losing match in Shanghai.
Tomic's latest round of trouble prompted calls on Tuesday from sports psychologist Jeff Bond and former Australia Davis Cup coach Roger Rasheed for the young man to introduce some objectivity into his entourage by removing his father, John, as coach and to have a fresh look at what he wanted to get out of tennis.
Bond, who helped Cash get out of his early-career doldrums and win Wimbledon in 1987, said Tomic gave the impression he was playing for money and fame rather than for the love of the sport, or winning.
He said the fight with a friend could provide a wake-up call, but noted Tomic had failed to take heed previously.
Bond said during his six years working with Cash he encountered a talented, dedicated player whose love of the game had become clouded through the weight of expectation. But taking Cash back to his primary motivation - the satisfaction derived from outsmarting opponents and winning points - helped him overcome any uncertainty.
''Patrick understood it because he was at the crossroads and he didn't like it,'' Bond said. ''He didn't like the feel of it at all, so it was, 'Do I do something about it or get out of tennis altogether'?''
''With Wimbledon looming, it was, 'I want to do well, I don't want to embarrass myself', Really, it came down to, 'Why are you out there? Is it the money, to win the tournament, or to beat X, Y or Z'? It was none of that. It was, 'I play this game because I've got these challenges I love to satisfy'.
''I'm not sure Tomic's got that sorted yet. He's had a couple of lows already and he hasn't bounced back. I'm not sure who he listens to … but he's got to be mature enough to have a good look at himself, a good look, or there's got to be someone external to give him some perspective and have enough impact to have him listen properly.''
Rasheed said Tomic needed to get his life in order and stay away from tennis until that happened. ''I think there's a lot of work to do off the court,'' Rasheed told Sky Sports Radio.