Give Bernie a break, he’s just being honest

Hugh McDonald Roar Rookie

By , Hugh McDonald is a Roar Rookie

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    Accountant, doctor, athlete. All different jobs. For Bernard Tomic, tennis is exactly that.

    He’s supremely talented, could be one of the greatest, but he has openly admitted to not enjoying his job. Just like millions of others across the globe. So why the backlash?

    Australia is a sport-obsessed nation. The morale of the country can be greatly impacted by Australia’s sporting successes or lack thereof. During the Great Depression, Australians clung to Don Bradman and his heroics to ease them through despair.

    After Australia II famously won the America’s Cup in 1983, our then Prime Minister Bob Hawke stated “Any boss who sacks a worker for not turning up today is a bum.”

    We love to see athletes represent this country with passion and determination. It’s why so many of us are disappointed, angry and frustrated by the performances of Tomic.

    Many of us have studied at high school and university for years to develop skills that allow us to work in a certain profession. This can often involve studying an area that we don’t so much enjoy, but instead an area in which our talents and strengths are best suited.

    It’s the same for athletes.

    They too may be training for a sport they aren’t passionate about, but merely what their talents and strengths are best suited to.

    Bernie Tomic is a talented tennis player, that’s his skill. He’s trained for years and by all reports was pushed hard by his father. At a young age he started his first job, professional tennis.

    Bernard Tomic mid swing

    (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

    For all the talent he possesses, he’s admitted he couldn’t care less, and maybe he really doesn’t.

    But you can’t be disappointed for Tomic not representing Australia correctly. Bernie, unless in Davis Cup, isn’t representing Australia. He’s representing Tomic Inc.

    He’s the boss, the employer, he’s in charge. It’s his business, his job! Be frustrated all you like that a young man is wasting incredible potential, but don’t get angry at him for letting down his country, he’s there representing himself.

    Now don’t get me wrong, if a player in a national team, was saying they were bored and didn’t want to be there. Rip in. All guns blazing. We as Australian’s have every right to be angry that someone who has been picked to represent us, our great country, isn’t going about that honour correctly. But Bernie isn’t, he’s just carrying out his own business.

    And then when he opens up to the press that he doesn’t enjoy what he does, that he’s bored, we jump down his throat? He can do and say what he likes.

    And while we’re on that note, a professional athlete is finally open and candid with the press and we get angry? Probably only moments after ridiculing rugby league players for being too cliché “Gave 110%” “Boys dug deep” “So proud of the boys”, we are now ripping into someone who has been honest! Give me a spell.

    When rugby league and AFL players sign multi-million dollar contracts with rival clubs, we understand that these players need to make as much money as they can while their talents still allow them to.

    But when Bernie Tomic comes out and tells us he’s only playing to earn as much cash as he can, it’s treated as treason. Let’s not forget it’s just his job.