John Tomic allowed into Sydney tennis

He may be banned from the Australian Open but Bernard Tomic’s outcast father John was in the house for the Sydney International to watch the world No.


52 successfully launch his ATP season.

John Tomic was banned from gaining accreditation to ATP events for 12 months after receiving a suspended sentence from a Spanish court for assaulting Bernard’s practice partner Thomas Drouet in May last year.

He won’t be seen at Melbourne Park – even as a spectator – with Tennis Australia chief executive Craig Tiley saying he was barred from the grounds.

But with other venues allowing him in as a paying fan at the discretion of individual tournament directors, John took advantage by sitting in his son’s box on Tuesday.

Bernard, who enjoyed a quickfire 6-3 6-0 win over Marcel Granollers, was delighted to have his much-maligned father in his corner.

“Having my dad there for the first time in a while, it’s good,” he said.

“I know his ban will finish very soon, in a few months, and back to helping me. I’m happy.”

Having moved to Melbourne, Bernard said it would be relatively straightforward to get advice from his father during the Australian Open despite the fact he won’t be allowed into the premises.

“Obviously he can’t come in, but that’s fine,” he said.

“I’ll see him at home. If there is anything I need to hear, he’ll tell me.”

Sydney International supremo Craig Watson had permitted John to attend the Australian Open tune-up.

He is however strictly prohibited from entering the players’ area at the Sydney Olympic Park facility.

“The ATP has banned John Tomic – as is public knowledge – which excludes him from getting credentials and being in other accreditable areas,” Watson said.

“There is nothing that prohibits the events agreeing to John being in public areas of the ground and I’ve agreed to allow that to happen.”

Waiting outside Ken Rosewall Arena for the rest of his son’s entourage, a casually attired John entered the showcourt just before the start of the match against the Spanish eighth seed, taking up a prime spot in the front row.

But he didn’t have to hang around for long as Bernard won in less than an hour.

Bernard is attempting to defend his sole ATP title win from 2013 in Sydney and maintain his ranking which will slip if he does not progress deep into the tournament.

He recently attempted to create some distance from his father by appointing a caretaker coach, Velimir Zovko.

But Bernard made it clear the faith that he still has in the man that has most shaped his career.

“He’s the one that taught me to play like this,” he said.

“Spent hours with him that I probably won’t spend with no one in my life. He knows me the best.”

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