A STRUGGLING single mum who hit her ex with a plastic bottle after he bragged to her about his surfing holiday, while paying her minimal child support, has been vindicated in court.

Office manager Tanya Austin was “at breaking point” when she lashed out and threw a plastic bottle at the face of her ex-partner on September 26.

The Austinmer mum had gone to pick her son up from her ex-partner’s flat after a visit when he began telling her about his overseas surfing trip.

It was the final straw for the 36-year-old, who was struggling financially and receiving very little child support from the man.

She threw the plastic tonic water bottle at the man’s face, hitting him below the eye.

The man was reportedly shaken up by the incident and suffered some bruising, scratches and tenderness to his face as a result, the court heard previously.

He called police and Ms Austin was charged with, and later pleaded guilty to, one count of common assault.

Yesterday Wollongong District Court Judge Paul Conlon scoffed at the notion the man was “trembling and crying” as a result of being struck by a plastic bottle and said Ms Austin should have never been charged.

“Oh boo-hoo. The bloke should have been told [by police] to man up, quite frankly,” he said.

“She has really been left with the total responsibility of bringing up their child. She receives little financial support [from him] … [and yet] he decided to take himself off on a wonderful surfing holiday and then told her all about it.”

The fact he had the temerity to even call police after the incident was very telling of his character, Judge Conlon added.

“This is an easy case for me to throw out. All I can do is apologise to you for ever having been brought into the court system.”

Judge Conlon granted Ms Austin’s appeal against the 12-month good behaviour bond she received for the offence in Wollongong Local Court last month and released her without conviction.