Ernests Gulbis of Latvia got it right several years ago when he said, “I think everybody is trying to be too nice. I understand, but somebody has to do something about it.”
That was in regards to the usual Press Conference jargon that is the same old, same old line, time and time again.
'He played very well but I was not at my best'. ( Would it be that the opponent would not let the opposition play at their best ?? )
'I had an off day'. ( My opponent was way too good )
'I had my chances but just couldn't take them. ' ( My opponent was way too good )
'I was not mentally at my best today. ( My opponent was way too good )
It's all pretty much the same but only the smartest tennis professionals give credit to their opponents, the rest make up stories about their own game and how they were not playing well, etc, etc. When you really think about it, a tennis player at any level is at the mercy of their opponent despite rankings, form or anything else that has relevance to the sport.
To say that you were 'not at your best' is not giving credit to the opponent who did not allow you to play at your best.
Bernard Tomic this week at Wimbledon got himself into all sorts of strife with his Press Conference comments. Renae Stubbs even called him a 'disgrace'. Interesting assumption Renae.
Here's the problem. Bernie has a reasonably high ranking. Since February Bernie has amassed around $200,000 by playing regularly and winning a few rounds here and there. Sorry Renae but rankings don't lie, they give a tennis professional an awful lot of money to lose early.
In fact if you are inside the top 100 or rather the top 60 as Bernie is, well it's like this Renae, you don't have to do much to make money, you simply have to turn up. It is irrelevant as to whether you win or not, you will still take home a ridiculous amount of cash.
So what do you think Bernie should do Renae ? Until the ATP start to 'unreward' tennis professionals for just turning up then players will just go through the motions. You don't have to win tennis tournaments now days to become rich, you just have to own a ranking, maintain it, sort of anyhow, and keep doing it, that's what Bernard Tomic does, he ticks the boxes to be a millionaire most years he plays tennis.
Ok so his Press Conference wasn't really well thought through and he probably shouldn't have admitted to asking for a trainer to help him with an injury that didn't exist but let's be realistic here, he wasn't playing a mug player. Mischa Zverev is the Number 27 seed at Wimbledon in the Mens Singles draw, he can play the game and has been in all sorts of form lately. It wasn't as though Bernie was playing 'Joe Nobody'. He was outclassed, simple.
The thing with Bernie is this, he has lost interest in the game but he is still getting paid big bucks to be disinterested, why would he take a break ? Fair dinkum if someone was paying me that amount of money to be disinterested well I would keep turning up, I may just 'tweak' my comments a little.
Bernie you need someone to get in your ear about your honesty, Renae doesn't appreciate it.
John McEnroe quit the sport for six months after a loss to a guy who he believed didn't deserve to be on the same court as he was, (Brad Gilbert beat Mac at the Masters in '86 and Mac was rather embarrassed about it ).
Bjorn Borg quit tennis altogether at age 26 through boredom. Bjorn didn't get called a disgrace, in fact many appreciated his honesty. Renae get hold of Bjorn and tell him what you think of tennis players being bored.
Fair dinkum Stubbsy you, along with Bernie need to change your way of explaining certain situations in life but I am certain Bernie won't opt for a commentary job as many ex players do ( Renae) who have nothing better to do with their lives than criticize today's players and the way they act on and off court.
Mats Wilander got it right , he sympathises with Bernie and that's why Mats is one of the most respected tennis commentators around the World, he doesn't go for the jugular, he analyses the situation first, then adds his spiel on it all.
What about Andre Agassi ? Even better.
"You have got to identify a problem before you can solve it. If he has identified that he is not liking the game then my suggestion would be go about finding your solution".
Well said Andre, please educate Renae.
Tennis professionals are supposed to be robots, say the same thing, do the same thing, smile, give that ridiculous 'high five' hand shake that supposedly shows unity between players even if they hate each other and show no emotion, above all, SHOW NO EMOTION.
Imagine the World of tennis in the 70's and 80's if McEnroe, Connors and Nastase were not permitted to say and be who they were ? Tennis would have ceased being a spectacle. Those guys made the sport interesting, even in the press conferences, they owned a personality.
Bernie is a personality, he is honest, he just needs to find a different way to express himself, at least to stop people such as ex players calling him a disgrace for explaining the way he really feels......