Tomic times his run
By Rob O’Gorman
Aussie young gun Bernard Tomic is eager for his next challenge after comfortably progressing to the second round of the French Open Junior Championships in Paris overnight.
The Queenslander lived up to his top seed status with a 6-3 6-4 win over Serbian Ilija Vucic.
Tomic, who was ousted in the quarterfinals of the Italian Open earlier this month, said while clay wasn’t his best surface he hoped to improve as the tournament progressed.
“It’s a funny feeling when you haven’t done much on clay and you come into the tournament as the No.1 seed,” Tomic told tennis.com.au.
“It’s always a struggle for the first round but I’m in the second round now and hopefully I can make it to the next round.”
Tomic spent time practising on a clay court at the Australian Institute of Sport [AIS] in Canberra prior to travelling to Europe and he said that experience combined with several lead-up Futures and Challenger events had prepared him well for the second Grand Slam tournament of the year.
“It’s always been good to play on [clay] but I’ve always struggled to play on it but everyday on clay is a better day and you learn something,” he said.
“It’s trying to stay patient on the big points where normally on hard court or grass you’ll just go for the winner but on clay it’s a bit hard because you have to rely on your movement to be quick out there.”
“You need to recover well and that’s what I’ve been working on the last six months on my movement.”
“It’s going to be a tough achievement to go all the way but I’ll try my best.”
The Australian Open Junior Champion, who will meet Frenchman Nassim Slilam in the second round, said his 2008 goals had changed since his breakthrough win at Melbourne Park in January.
“I’ve set my goals for this year and that would be to try to reach the top 500 in ATP [rankings] but anything can happen, I’ve just got to stay healthy and play good tennis.”