Tomic's father watches match despite ban
SYDNEY (Reuters) - The presence of his banned father watching from courtside boosted Bernard Tomic's game as he opened the defense of his Sydney International title with a 6-3 6-0 demolition of eighth seed Marcel Granollers on Tuesday.
"Having my dad there is a very good feeling," Tomic told reporters after the victory over his Spanish opponent.
"Obviously winning my first title here gives a lot of memories to me. I'm happy the way I played today. Having my dad there for the first time in a while, it's good.
"I know his ban will finish very soon, in a few months, and back to helping me. I'm happy. I played very good. Felt very good. I'm happy to be back playing like this."
Former taxi driver John Tomic has not watched his son play since he was banned last May from all ATP events, which includes next week's Australian Open, after he was charged with head-butting his son's former training partner Frenchman Thomas Drouet and breaking his nose.
He was convicted and sentenced to eight month's imprisonment by a Spanish court for assault last September though was not required to serve jail time because his sentence was under two years in length.
While he is banned from receiving accreditation, which entitles him into official areas, he was allowed to buy a ticket as a member of the public at the discretion of the tournament director.
"The ATP has banned John Tomic - as is public knowledge - which excludes him from getting credentials and being in other accreditable areas," Sydney International director Craig Watson told Australian media. Continued...