Tennis dad John Tomic found guilty of broken-nose assault in Madrid

World number 52 player’s father handed eight-month sentence for May attack

A Madrid court on Friday found the father of Australian tennis player Bernard Tomic guilty of assault and handed down a sentence of eight months in prison. However, John Tomic will probably not see the inside of a jail cell as sentences of fewer than two years under Spanish law, in the case of a first offense, are generally held in abeyance.

Tomic Sr, who was at the time part of his son’s coaching staff, was convicted of causing bodily harm to Thomas Drouet in the Spanish capital during the Madrid Masters tournament last May. Drouet, the player’s hitting partner, told the court that Tomic confronted him after the Frenchman had made a complaint to Bernard Tomic about his father. Australia’s Herald Sun newspaper quoted Drouet as saying that Tomic Sr had treated him “like a dog” during his time on the coaching team.

“I was expecting an apology for the verbal abuse, but instead he spat in my face and told me he wouldn’t pay me any more,” Drouet said. “I replied ‘OK John, that’s fine, you’re a real man. Bernard will pay me.’ Then he head-butted me.”

Tomic’s lawyer said that although he recognized causing Drouet’s injuries, he claimed he had acted in self-defense after the Monaco-born 30-year-old had “grabbed him by the arms.” Drouet suffered a broken nose and bruised vertebrae in the assault.

John Tomic was banned from the ATP Tour for 12 months following the incident and it is likely he will now be barred from ATP events altogether.

Bernard Tomic is currently ranked 52 in the world and reached the last 16 at Wimbledon this year. He also won the ATP 250 event in Sydney in January.

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