On Tuesday night (14 Jan), a young Australian, only 21 years old, stood in front of Australia and the world’s media to face tennis’ world number one, Rafael Nadal. Now we know that Bernard Tomic does not always make headlines for the right reasons, but that’s outside the court. Many great tennis players have also made names for themselves off court, such as Agassi, McEnroe and Becker. However, like them, when Tomic is on the tennis court he is living his passion, something that many of us do not have the courage to do in life.
I didn’t get to see the match, but I was saddened when I read:
“The 21-year-old drew boos and jeers when he retired with a groin injury a set down to Nadal in their first-round match.” 
I thought to myself, that’s un-Australian. No sports person makes that kind of decision lightly. I started to wonder, is the cost of a ticket and the spectators need for entertainment more important than the health and wellbeing of our young sports people?
Here is a young man who has worked hard to stand on that court. He has made sacrifices to be there and he has also been braver than most of us. Every time he gets on that court he is vulnerable to the scrutiny of everyone. Australians booing and jeering – why should young people strive for greatness in this country if that’s what they get in return?
I have a greater respect for Tomic after this incident. He has shown maturity and most of all, the capacity for resilience. He is a young man who:
· has a positive view of himself and his confident about his strengths and abilities
· is constantly moving towards his goals
· knew how far to push his limits, and when to step out for his own safety and self-care
· has a strong support network around him and
· has a hopeful outlook on life.
I applaud Bernard Tomic and wish him well in his career. He is living his dream. As for those who booed and jeered, I hope that on reflection, applauding him would have been a better choice. Are you living your dream too?