'Respect Lleyton': Karl slams Tomic for Hewitt serve
BERNARD Tomic has hit back at Lleyton Hewitt after Australia's Davis Cup captain stated it was unlikely he will ever play in the competition again - and Karl Stefanovic doesn't like it.
Fresh from being the first Australian contestant in the history of I'm of a Celeb to sensationally walk out of the show, Tomic responded to Hewitt's declaration his time in the national colours were likely over. And he didn't hold back.
"I don't care what Lleyton said. I never lost to him," Tomic said bluntly while appearing on The Project.
Tomic, who defeated Hewitt in five sets in the second round of the 2015 US Open in their only ATP Tour meeting, then reiterated his stance that Australia would be unable to take out the competition without his talents in the line-up.
"The important thing is that there's a reason why I played Davis Cup and there's a reason why my record stands that good," Tomic said.
"I stand by my call. They know they can't win without me and I know they can't win without me."
Today host Karl Stefanovic took a swing at Tomic on his show this morning.
"He's so annoying ...so annoying!" Stefanovic said. "Lleyton Hewitt was number one in the world. Bernie, you never got there. Respect Lleyton.
"He goes on and on. I don't want to hear from him anymore. Can you do your talking on the court rather than off?"
Tomic mentioned he was feeling depressed during his time in the South African jungle and Stefanovic encouraged him to seek help.
"With respect, if he has got something that is not quite going well for him he should get help for it," he said. "Everyone should be encouraged to do that. But it's continually coming out and bagging people who have made it, actually done it and achieved, it's just too much."
TOMIC LIKENS TENNIS AUSTRALIA TO 'CORRUPT' FIFA
The brazen comments from Tomic may just have dug a deeper hole for his hopes of regaining a spot in the national side.
Hewitt stated the environment within the current team was "as good as he's been a part of in a long time" and as Tomic continues his feud, the relationship may just been untenable.
If those harsh words weren't enough to fracture his relationship within the national side, Tomic then took aim at Tennis Australia.
Having previously claimed the organisation was corrupt, he took it one step further as he likened them to world football body FIFA.
"I'm not happy with that whole situation with Tennis Australia. Until that clears and a few of the problems come out," Tomic said.
"We've seen it with the FIFA Federation, how they were corrupt and I know it's in there. I'm yet to address it. Hopefully I can speak about it soon."
After The Project host Waleed Aly questioned him on wanting to return for the Davis Cup side even though he thought Tennis Australia was corrupt, Tomic doubled down on his stance.
Tomic isn't afraid to speak his mind, but previously admitted that he at times makes comments before regretting them five minutes later.
Something Aly was quick to jump on.
"Is this a statement you might regret in five minutes?" Aly said.
"No. This is a statement I stand by," Tomic responded.
"It's up to only them to fix...we have a few wrong people in that organisation and I hope that can change and I hope the best players can be playing Davis Cup again."
HOST SLAMS TOMIC DEPARTURE
Tomic has found himself under media scrutiny of late after his shock decision to depart the jungle and fly back to Australia.
I'm A Celeb host Julia Morris said she "smelled a rat" throughout his appearance on the show.
"No one is more switched on to mental health problems than me ... I'm not saying that it's not genuine depression ..." Morris told Nights with Steve Price.
"(But) if he's feeling down, it's certainly not the jungle that did that to him. I really honestly don't believe that three days can do that ...
"We're all in this together, so when someone does walk I am going to take it personally. We've all worked 14 hours a day ... we all are so invested ...
"I do feel for Bernard. There's a lot going on there ... he would do well to stop and do some work on himself."
Tomic, 25, admitted he had doubts about entering into the reality show even before he landed.
"I doubted myself a couple of times before I even went and thought whether it was the right move," Tomic said.
"And I kind of forced my brain to come here and I knew it wasn't the right call after spending a day or two here.
"I just realised I had to get out of here and that was my final call. I think it was the right one for myself."
While his decision to leave caught many off guard, the former No. 17 tennis star admitted to feeling depressed and that his desire to return to the court was a driving factor.
"That first night made me kind of depressed. And made me miss what I really want to do is get back in the world, in the top and push for the top eight, five in the world. That's my goal," Tomic said.
"I think only after spend the first night in there, second night, it finally got to me. I got to get back to doing what I do.
"It was my mistake and my fault for coming. It's something I have to deal with. Take it on the chest. I have to get back to doing what I do. It's important for me right now."