Tomic focused ahead of Querrey battle
Bernard Tomic has arrived at the All England Club fresh, focused and healthy, boding well for his tough first round match-up with 21st seed Sam Querrey.
After a sizzling start to the season followed by an unfortunate dip, Bernard Tomic appears to be back on track.
And his return to form couldn’t have been better timed ahead of the Wimbledon championships, his favourite tournament on a surface best suited to his beguiling game.
The Aussie No.1, who jumped five spots to world No.59 this week following his run to the quarterfinals in Eastbourne, opens his campaign at the All England Club against 21st seed Sam Querrey.
Tomic says he’s confident, healthy and focused heading into that match, against an opponent whom he has beaten in their only previous encounter at the Australian Open in 2012.
“The last 10 days have been pretty good for me. Played pretty well at Eastbourne, fitness is OK and my health is pretty good. I’m feeling good coming into this tournament,” he noted.
“Hopefully I can play well – the first round is going to be a very tough ask. But if I can do it the draw can maybe open up.”
If he was to win, it would harken back to his scintillating run at The Championships in 2011, where as a qualifier, he upended a seed in the opening round (Nikolay Davydenko) on his way to the quarterfinals before falling to Novak Djokovic.
The top seeded Serbian again looms as a potential quarterfinal opponent in 2013.
Reaching the quarterfinals Eastbourne marked his best result – and the first time he’d won two consecutive matches at a tour event – since progressing to the same stage in Marseille in February.
The time in between those events has been marred by off-court issues and health troubles; he was struck down with a virus during the US summer hardcourt events in Indian Wells and Miami, and suffered a skin infection during the European claycourt swing.
A hamstring injury then forced his withdrawal during his opening match at Roland Garros.
But now back to full health, Tomic is eyeing his appearance at Wimbledon with renewed vigour and excitement, and determined not to suffer the same fate as he did at last year’s tournament, where he admitted nerves got the better of him.
“I felt a little bit different I think last year (compared with 2011) because I was very nervous … didn’t know how I would approach the match, and let my frustration out last year on the court,” he said.
“This year I’m more positive and relaxed. My job’s going to be to have to win that first round and if I play good tennis, like I said, the draw can open up … if you beat a seed in the first round it’s good.”
Helping his plot his assault on the towering Querrey is Lleyton Hewitt, who beat the American very recently at the Queen’s Club event in London.
Tomic revealed that Hewitt had provided some valuable advice on how to combat Querrey – Tomic said he struggled to remember much about how he played in their match 18 months ago – and said he would take that wisdom into his assignment on Court No.3 on Tuesday.
“If I could take Lleyton as a coach I would any time for sure,” Tomic said.
“He’s a nice guy. I got to know him really well in the last few years, he helps me a lot when I play some guys I haven’t played (before). He knows a lot, he’s been around a long time now and if you can pick up any information from a person like this, it’s only doing you (good).
“When I get my chance I’ve got to take it – I’ve got to be aggressive, and if I’m on the defence I’ve got to be able to use my slice … If I want to have any chance of winning, I’ve got to play my tennis, and I think after the first round if I potentially win, who knows.”