Bernard Tomic has revealed his ambitious plans for a comeback and believes he is capable of reaching the top 10 in "two to three years." The 29-year-old claimed he achieved his career-high ranking of World No. 17 with only "60% effort".
Tomic is currently ranked 259th in the world after winning just nine of the 21 matches he played this year - 19 of which were in ATP qualifying or at Challenger tour level. He reached his peak ATP ranking of No. 17 in January 2016.
The Australian won the last of his four ATP titles at the Chengdu Open in 2018. His career has been in decline since 2017, though, when he finished the season 114 places below his 2016 year-end ranking of World No. 26.
In an interview with The Courier Mail, Tomic spoke of his lack of application in recent years but insisted he is now determined to have a strong finish to his career.
“I wasn’t really mentally there," Tomic said. "As opposed to now I’ve realized: knuckle down, do the right thing, stay healthy and give tennis one more shot – the right way. One of my goals is to finish off right. And retire happy. So we’ll see."
The 29-year-old then pointed out that players far older than him are having success on the tour, while revealing how much longer he intends to continue playing.
“Guys are aged 40, 38, and in the top 50, top 100, top 30," Tomic continued. "I don’t want to play pro tennis until I’m 38. It’s not something I strive for. I’m good at it, but I don’t see myself playing then. At least the next half decade I do. That’s why I better have one more good crack at it, turn it around, do the right thing then retire happy."
Tomic also outlined his ambition to break into the top 10, while asserting he reached his best ranking by exerting well below maximum effort.
“I have a goal," Tomic added. "For sure one is to get top 10. When I got to 17 in the world, I was a couple of points away from finishing 12. That was really at 60 per cent effort. I reckon I can get into top 10. One of my goals is to finish it off right. I reckon it can be done in two or three years.”
"I’ve got one more chance at this. I’ll try and do it for myself" - Bernard Tomic
Bernard Tomic reaffirmed his desire to turn his career around, while admitting he misses the experiences that come with being a top professional player.
“I’m feeling good," Tomic said. "I’m going to try and turn this around and give myself the best chance in the next couple of years. I’ve got one more chance at this. I’ll try and do it for myself. The moments of the pressure. Playing these top guys. Winning, losing, that feeling. You miss that sort of stuff. The crowd. When the whole audience gets behind you, you miss that."
The World No. 259 will likely try to qualify for the 2022 Australian Open in January. Tomic lost to Denis Shapovalov in the second round of the Australian Open this year after coming through qualifying.
"The only person that can stand in your way is you," Tomic captioned in an Instagram post. "I’ve came back before. It’s time to set the record straight."