Bernard Tomic: Taking A Set From Federer More Exciting Than Taking One From Djokovic [Video]
by Tom Gainey | February 28th, 2012, 10:14 am

Exciting Australian Bernard Tomic took time to answer Facebook questions from Delray Beach over the weekend.

Among them, Tomic said that he considers Milos Raonic to be a future challenger to No. 1 throne, that his slice gets him out of trouble.

He said his fourth round win over Xavier Malisse at Wimbledon last year was the biggest, he is not sure if he’ll play mixed doubles with Sam Stosur at the Olympics and he wants to win Wimbledon.

He added that he considers taking a set of Roger Federer was more exciting than taking one off of Novak Djokovic.

“A set from Roger,” the 19-year-old old. “It’s a big feeling, different feeling to get a set off a true great like that.”

Tomic got that set off Federer in Davis Cup in September. He also won a set off Djokovic in the Wimbledon quarterfinals.

Tomic, who was such a story at the Australian Open this year, won his first round match at Delray Beach last night beating German veteran Tommy Haas 64, 63.

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19 Comments for Bernard Tomic: Taking A Set From Federer More Exciting Than Taking One From Djokovic [Video]

jane Says:

Probably to Tomic, Fed’s of another generation too, whereas he practices with Nole periodically, and I imagine they’ll do so more in the future given that they both have places in Monte Carlo now. Looking forward to seeing how he does at Wimbledon this year, and nice to hear him praising his rival, age-wise, Milos.

Sienna Says:

Cheeky devil that Tomic guy. Is he Kroatian /Aussie?

Jeanius Says:

He will probably gain more from losing to Fed than winning against Djokovic.

Colin Says:

Sienna, he was born in Germany of Croatian parents, who migrated to Australia when he was three years old.

Sienna Says:

He actually said true great! So he does not consider Djoker a true great? Now that must have something to do with his background. I believe there is not much lovelost between Croates and Serbs.

andrea Says:

well…roger has that extra special aura about him not only as a player but as a person. it’s that alchemic quality which other players don’t have…i’m sure the ‘true great’ comment reflects on that.

jane Says:

I am having trouble posting a quote/link – note sure why. Anyhow, I tried it a few times so if it does ever come through, I hope a moderator can limit the post/point to one of them. With thanks.

jane Says:

Nole and Tomic are friends; they have been since 2010. Tomic says Nole is one of the nicest guys on tour and one of the best returners in the world. I can’t post the link for some reason, but the story is in “The Sydney Morning Herald” and is called “Tomic to play friend Djokovic in the quarters” referring to their match at Wimbledon last summer. Nole is also friends with Ljubicic. I don’t think generalizing about relationships between countries is pertinent.

Wog boy Says:

Jane, I can’t agree more with you about this matter. They are all friends and sportsmen, Ljubicic is the nicest bloke you can meet, Karlovic is the same. If my memory serves me right, when Nole won Montreal in 2007, at the presentation the announcer called him Croatian, Nole corrected him and then said “…it doesn’t matter, that is the same…”
When it comes to Tomic, my opinion is that he is a bit of a boofhead, puppy and still has to learn, but he will get there, eventually!

martini Says:

I like the fact that some of the stars of tomorrow use the slice. Apart from Tomic, Dolgopolov uses it quite frequently.

Michael Says:

True. Tomic considers Roger as his idol and is showing his respect. But I was somewhat disappointed by his behaviour at the Australian Open 2012 when he shook hands with Roger at the end of the match. He could have exchanged a few words of pleasantries with Roger but he just fled away which looked ugly. True he was disappointed with the loss but nobody expected Tomic to win. The day was special considering that the man he considers as idol is on the other side of net and he must be courteous. Hope Tomic will learn such manners with experience. He is still young and looks a little spoiled.

Dave Says:

In mid 2005, 19-year old Nadal could have said Agassi is a ‘true great’ — a living legend who has been confirmed as one of the greatest ever — compared to Federer at the time. And he would have been right even though Federer was the big star who had recently won 5 grand slam titles and 2 World Tour Finals titles (TMC). Roger’s success came over only the preceding two years while Agassi had a much longer track record of proven success. Of course, by 2007, Federer had become a living legend greater than Agassi.

Most pro players would probably agree that Federer’s comprehensive and legendary success is the bar or standard most players desire to reach.

What does the term ‘true great’ really mean? There is no accepted definition. But this article in a major British newspaper distinguishes true great English novelists from a couple of overrated novelists:

Now that we finally understand what ‘true great’ really means in the English language, we can understand what the Australian Tomic really meant.

grendel Says:

Dave – Simon Heffer is an irascible and eccentric English political journalist. He is entitled to his opinion, of course (and I must say, I do agree with him that Maugham has been unfairly neglected),but you wouldn’t give too much weight to his views outside of politics. Here are the words of Doris Lessing, a very great British (and Zimbabwean) novelist who is very definitely worth listening to: (I choose this passage partly because Heffer has a good sneer at Virginia Woolf):”She is a writer some people love to hate. It is painful when someone whose judgement you respect comes out with a hymn of dislike, or even hate, for Virginia Woolf. I always want to argue with them: but how can you not see how wonderful she is… For me, her two great achievements are “Orlando”, which always makes me laugh, it is such a witty little book, perfect, a gem; and “To the Lighthouse”, which i think is one of the finest novels in English. Yet people of the tenderest discrimination cannot find a good word to say. I want to protest that surely it should not be “the dreadful novels of Virginia Woolf”, “silly Orlando” but rather “I[underlined] don’t like Orlando, I [underlined] don’t like To the Lighthouse, I [underlined] don’t like Virginia Woolf.” After all, when people of equal discrimination to oneself adore, or hate, the same book, the smallest act of modesty, the minimum act of respect for the great profession of literary critic should be “I [underlined] don’t like Woolf, but that is just my bias” “.

Heffer partly has it in for Woolf because of her intemperate attack on Arnold Bennett. Lessing had this to say:”Virginia Woolf was not one for half measures. The idea that one may like Arnold Bennett AND Viginia Woolf….was not possible for her. These polarisations, unfortunately endemic in the literary world, always do damage: Woolf did damage. For decades, the arbitrary ukase dominated the higher reaches of literary criticism. (Perhaps we should ask why literature is so easily influenced by immoderate opinion?) A fine writer, Arnold Bennett, had to be rejected, apologised for, and then – later – passionately defended, in exactly her own way of doing things: attack or passionate defence. Bennett: good; Woolf: bad. But I think,” Doris Lessing concludes, “the acid has leaked out and away from the confrontation.” Apparently not, judging by Heffer’s effusion.

In copying this out, I was astonished by how much Lessing’s words – found echo in the world of tennis – again, and again. I find her plea for a certain modesty in the expression of opinion to be just as relevant in the world of tennis as that of literature.

alison hodge Says:

i have to say its great to have grendel posting again,his posts are quite long, but always thought provoking,interesting and funny all at the same time,im also missing ajet whos absent just lately,and swiss maestro who seems to have vanished of the face of the earth.

Dave Says:

grendel, my main aim in linking Simon Heffer’s article was mischievous: to screw up people’s assumptions about the meaning of the term “true great”. But trust you to have an understanding of the issues in the article :)

I confess I’ve not read anything by Arnold Bennett. And I’m not very familiar with Woolf’s criticism of Bennett that seems to be motivating part of Heller’s article.

Heller exaggerates when he claimed “I never saw so much fuss for SO little” and “Woolf’s snobbery, preciousness and bonkersness come through on EVERY page.” But I find some sliver of truth in Heller’s views on Woolf and especially on Lawrence. I agree with Heller on James Joyce.

Woolf has arguably been unfairly criticized by people with their own agendas or expectations. Doris Lessing is one of the great post-war British novelists and she is to be commended for defending Woolf against such sometimes unfair criticism. But I question the rationality of Lessing’s argument when she stoops to the cheap trick of attacking the messenger’s emotions (“(Woolf) is a writer some people love to hate… a hymn of dislike, or even hate, for Virginia Woolf”). Lessing presumes that irrational bias explains “how can you not see how wonderful (Woolf) is” (“I [underlined] don’t like To the Lighthouse, I [underlined] don’t like Virginia Woolf… I [underlined] don’t like Woolf, but that is just my bias.”).

A book can be rated or assessed without like/dislike for either the book or its author, contrary to what Lessing claims. We can argue about bias colouring our judgment, but bias is a fact of life. I first read books by Joyce, Woolf, Lawrence, Huxley, etc. a spart of my literature program while aged 15-17 years. My classmates had no irrational hate for Woolf or Lawrence, though most had a bias for novels that were easy to read and had sex. Yet most agreed, for various reasons, that James Joyce’s books were superior to either Woolf’s “To The Lighthouse” or Lawrence’s “Sons and Lovers”. The collective intelligence of a group assessment often leads to ‘valid’ opinions. When I first came across this link of 100 best novels, I thought my classmates would have ranked these works in a similar order.

Sienna Says:

I am truly at a loss with some of the postings here.
But I do feel Tomic kid doesnot have a great feel with Virginia Woolf but he was just being a cheeky devil towards Djokovic.

Him being from Croatian background in Aussieland might have something to do with that. A few years ago there were as I remember riots between the Serbs and the Croates?

grendel Says:

Lessing is not, and never could be, cheap. She is simply drawing attention to the irrational hatred Woolf inspires in some. Of course she has no objection to people not liking Woolf on grounds of taste. She doesn’t mind people disliking her (Doris Lessing), actually – the lady has broad shoulders and is not susceptible to flattery.

Incidentally, I once saw Heffer. I was walking down a street in London, and I suddenly saw this funny looking chap – a sort of miniature Pickwick in build, but with a solemn and owlish rather than cheery face – and he was negotiating a tricky bit of pavement whilst plunged in a deep reverie. He was probably thinking about what he’d like to do to Virginia Woolf if he could catch her on a dark night. Anyway, our eyes met, and he shot me a look of deep disapproval.

I gave him a wave, blew him a kiss, and passed on my way.

jamie Says:

Psychic Predictions for 2012:

AO: Djokovic(duh)

FO: Nadal

Wimbledon: Murray

Olympics: Federer

USO: Djokovic

Skorocel Says:

“It’s a big feeling, different feeling to get a set off a true great like that.”

LOL Bernard ;-)

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