Fresh blow in Bernard Tomic’s sad fall from graceWhat next for Bernard Tomic?

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Bernard Tomic teased us but in the end it was, sadly, the same old story as much of his career.

The Aussie tennis star was on the comeback trail in Brisbane and showed glimpses of promise as he qualified for the final of a local tournament on the weekend — but he didn’t even make it on the court for the decider.

Warming up before the final of the UTR Pro Tennis Series event, Tomic was hampered by a back issue and pulled out of the match, failing to take what would have been at least a small step forward as he looks to rejuvenate his stuttering career.

Followed by reporters while walking shirtless back to his car, Tomic answered “soon” after being asked when he would return.

“Unfortunately I couldn’t play today but hopefully I’ll improve,” he said. “I’ve been trying for a year to come back so I’ll try my best.”

The 28-year-old was a Wimbledon quarter-finalist in 2011 and once ranked as high as 17th in the world. Confident he had the game to win a grand slam, Tomic has since fallen onto the tennis scrap heap as his ranking and desire plummeted.

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He’s now ranked 226th in the world and can’t even get a gig on the main ATP Tour.

Tomic’s appearance at the UTR Pro in his home state of Queensland was supposed to be a stepping stone on his journey back to the big leagues but his long wait will have to continue.

Whether he ever makes it back at all — or even wants to — remains a mystery, especially from a man who has said repeatedly he doesn’t even like tennis and is perfectly happy sitting back counting his millions of dollars.

The Queensland Tennis Centre certainly wasn’t a setting for millionaires this past week. Tomic was forced to supply his own food, drinks and towel, and there was only a maximum of one linesperson allowed to officiate each match.

Not to mention, there was not a ballkid in sight, meaning Tomic had to pick up his own balls.

If ever there was a sign of how far Tomic has fallen, this was it.

He scraped through to the final courtesy of a tough three-set wins over world No. 282 Akira Santillan and fellow Australian Moerani Bouzige, who has an ATP singles ranking of 1872.

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