Bernard Tomic, who has repeatedly been accused of tanking matches, says that appearing not to be interested is sometimes part of his strategy.
Tomic came from a set down to defeat Fernando Verdasco at Queen's Club on Thursday, and then defended himself against renewed criticism of his commitment to the game.
"[T]hey accuse me of tanking,” he said in his press conference. “Sometimes, you know, that's the way I sort of come back into the match. You know, I sort of seem like I'm not there and stuff, but really I am there ... So sometimes I think people misunderstand me. Sometimes I use being down in a match, as opposed to being ready and on your feet—sometimes I like to change it and do it my way.
"And sometimes it looks [like] I'm not trying. But really, I'm competing mentally for every point."
Tomic caused controversy by not attempting to properly return a match point in the first round of the Masters tournament in Rome in May.
He said at Queen's Club that his return is not his best shot, which affects his strategy when he’s down in a return game.
"I'm really good at winning matches from behind," he said, pointing to his come-from-behind victory over Verdasco. "But, you know, that's something I'm working on. And [what] got me through today was I competed for every point."
However, the 23-year-old did acknowledge that he’s had problems concentrating in matches, saying that the presence of Davis Cup captain Lleyton Hewitt has helped him.
"When he's there it gives me that fire to focus in those first few points," said Tomic. "Having Lleyton here on the side, it encourages me so much to compete every point. And that's one of my biggest problems in the past, is maintaining that concentration and fighting for every point."
Tomic defeated Gilles Muller, 7-6 (5), 4-6, 6-2, on Friday to reach the Aegon Championships semifinals.