Bernard Tomic’s disastrous week has taken another surprise turn, with Australia’s top-ranked male knocked out of the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships in the opening round.
Tomic is only competing in the US tournament because he was kicked out of Australia’s Davis Cup squad over his “unacceptable” criticism of Tennis Australia (TA) officials including Pat Rafter and CEO Craig Tiley following his third-round Wimbledon exit.
On the eve of his match, he again hit the headlines when TA distributed an email which stated he would be playing in the “Hall of Shame Tennis Championships”.
While TA officials apologised for the “human error”, the shame extended to Tomic’s game, which resulted in a 6-3 7-5 defeat to fellow Australian John-Patrick Smith on Monday.
Meanwhile, seventh-seeded Steve Johnson, one of five seeded Americans slated to play this week, beat Michael Berrer of Germany 6-7 (8-6) 6-1 6-2.
Two-time Newport champion and top-seeded John Isner, No.4-seeded Jack Sock, No.6 Sam Querrey and No.8 Tim Smyczek are scheduled to play their opening matches later this week.
The tournament is played in conjunction with induction ceremonies for the International Tennis Hall of Fame.
Two-time major champion Amelie Mauresmo of France heads the 2015 class that’s scheduled to be enshrined during a centre-court ceremony before the semifinals Saturday.
The 36-year old, who is now Andy Murray’s coach, won the Australian Open and Wimbledon in 2006 and spent 39 weeks at No. 1 in the WTA rankings. Mauresmo, hired to work with Murray last year, is pregnant and unable to travel to the ceremony.
Joining Mauresmo will be David Hall of Australia, a six-time Paralympic medallist, and Nancy Jeffett, elected in the contributor category.