Bernard wins in quick time
SYDNEY, AAP – Forget Fast4 tennis, Bernard Tomic gets it done in half the time.
While Roger Federer and Lleyton Hewitt’s world-first clash under the sport’s speedy new format stretched one hour, 32 minutes on Monday night, Tomic needed just 43 minutes to dispatch Igor Sijsling 6-1 6-2 in his Apia International Sydney opener less than 48 hours later.
Feeling fitter and stronger than ever following a gruelling off-season, Tomic says he’s a man on a mission in 2015 after losing four months of last season following double hip surgery.
“The bottom line this year is making as many (ranking) points as I can,” he said after setting up a last-16 meeting with German third seed Philipp Kohlschreiber.
“Winning as many matches as I can and staying as consistent as I can, (rather) than winning a tournament and not doing anything for five months.”
With precious few points to defend between now and Wimbledon, Tomic is conscious of the opportunity to rise rapidly from his current position of No.71 in the world.
A quarterfinalist at Wimbledon as a teenager in 2011, the 22-year-old craves a seeding at The All England Club in 2015 to maximise his chances of breaking through at Grand Slam level.
“If I can just remain inside the top 50 or push higher after the Australian Open, this is going to be huge for me,” he said.
“Then the next six months, I can push forward for the top 15, even 20.”
Tomic has spent the first half of the summer, putting in the hard yards and getting the miles back in his legs to be peaking for the Australian Open.
“When I was doing so well at 18, 19, I thought naturally everything was going to happen without the hard work, you know, getting inside the top 10,” he said.
“So I knew I needed to get super fit and super strong in areas that were still not 100 per cent, which were my hips and glutes and hamstrings.
“It was tough … It was a long two months of work, but it pays off and I’m feeling a lot better on court.”