View Full Version : Wall Street Journal: In Tennis, the Cool Kids Love Cla

Bad Dog
05-22-2009, 03:24 AM
Is it true that in today's top world touring pro tennis ranks, clay is the best surface to learn on?

Here are three excerpts from the tennis article in the US edition of today's WSJ:

• “Nine of the top-10 men in the ATP rankings learned to play primarily on clay or had extensive clay training. Increasingly, some of the game’s best coaches and tennis officials —even in the normally clay-allergic United States —see mastering the dusty red stuff as crucial to achieving all-around greatness.”

• “Jose Higueras, the Spanish coach who helped Michael Chang and Jim Courier win the French Open, puts it this way: “Clay teaches you how to suffer.” […] Roger Federer, who usually eschews having a coach, enlisted Mr. Higueras last year in large part to help him try to capture the French, the only Grand Slam that eludes him.”

• “Mr. Higueras, who was recently hired by Patrick McEnroe to revamp the coaching corps in the USTA’s elite-player development program, believes players who grew up playing on clay have an advantage in today’s tennis. “Playing on clay is like playing chess,” he said. “You have more time to be creative and more choices to make on what shots to hit.” Clay is the best surface to allow young players to learn, he said.”


05-22-2009, 09:07 AM
Of course in the power baseliner era, learning on clay is going to help. No mystery there.