Bernard Tomic may be battling away on the Challenger circuit and languishing at World No. 660, but it hasn’t stopped him from shooting a warning at Wimbledon runner up Nick Kyrgios.
Fresh off his first tournament win since 2018, Tomic appeared to only have Kyrgios in his sights, despite the latter having the best season on-court of his career.
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Tomic won the M15 Cancun tournament on September 12 and is through to the semi-final of yet another M15 tournament in Cancun as he looks to rebuild his career.
Tomic has struggled to get out of the opening rounds of any tournament this season and dropped as low as World No. 825 in the world in August.
But his Cancun win last month launched him up to World No. 660.
Kyrgios on the other hand moved back up to World No. 20 including winning the Washington title, the final of Wimbledon and the quarterfinals of the US Open.
And he would be World No. 13 if the Wimbledon points counted this season.
Asked in an Instagram Live video earlier in the week whether an exhibition match against Tomic would happen, Kyrgios said: “TBH (to be honest), don’t think I wanna make him relevant anymore. I’m not gonna bother with someone 800 in the world. But all the best.”
But the comment left the door open for Tomic who replied: “Just a matter of time before I see you Nicky boy. #obsessed #scared”.
He also responded to a fan who asked how long it would be before he returns to the top 100, saying: “Momentum’s coming my way. Not long now. Done it before. Will do it again.”
It’s not the first bold claim from Tomic recently.
At the beginning of the season, Tomic claimed he could “win Wimbledon” and that he was a “top 10 player in the world on grass”.
That was after he was defeated in straight sets by then-World No. 146 Roman Safiullin 6-1 6-4 during Australian Open qualifying.
In May, fans goaded Kyrgios to spark a heated spat between the pair when they claimed Tomic was better than the Canberran.
“Better in what way? I’ve got a higher career high (ranking). More money, more wins and give back whenever I can,” he began.
“It’s time for BT to just quiet down. He ain’t even playing anymore. I got years left.”
Tomic replied, after posting screenshots of the quotes on his Instagram: “The only logical explanation is that I’m his idol. He’s always been in my shadow growing up.
“That’s why anytime someone mentions my name to him, it gets under his skin.
“He knows he can’t rewrite history. The records that I set when I was 16, 17, 18, and 19 — youngest slam quarter-finalist at Wimbledon (since Boris Becker), the biggest tournament in the world.
“He knows he can’t change that, he can’t rewrite that and he would love to shut me up if he could, he knows he can’t.
“He knows my style dominates his and he knows he will lose.”
Kyrgios then labelled Tomic the “most HATED athlete in Australia” and claimed to have paid for a flight home for the Queenslander when he ran out of money.
He also swiped Tomic again, saying his tennis ability and money had both evaporated.
Tomic then challenged Kyrgios to a million-dollar boxing bet or one-off tennis match as the barbs continued to fly.