Do we as fans have a duty to the sport?

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by ark_28, Mar 31, 2013.

  1. Laurie

    Laurie Professional

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    I was thinking of young players like Ryan Harrison, Christine McHale, Sloane Stephens, haven't seen much of Mallory Burdette yet. But the convention seems to be a grinding style and western grips, that's very much the Spanish way of playing. Sloane has potential but compared to Venus, Serena and Lindsay from 10 years ago, she doesn't go for her shots as far as I can see - yet. The mentality is to play safe and play within strict margins. Serena grew up in a different era which is why she goes for her shots regardless and plays what I would call more in the American spirit.
     
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  2. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Only Ferry was cramping
     
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  3. Mick3391

    Mick3391 Professional

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    Those that stand to make a lot of money off tennis are ruining it just as happened with boxing, same deal.

    They slow the courts down (And yes, still do), get 5 hour error fests, and sell tons of advertising. Players burn out, fans get bored, sport dies.

    Look what the sport has devolved into; Instead of players making mental strategies to set up winners, today it's sit 4 feet behind the baseline and simply wait for errors. Who sits through 4-5 hours of 20 shot rally's?

    Don't expect any help from the fans if this forum is any indicator.
     
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  4. *Sparkle*

    *Sparkle* Professional

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    It's fair to say that change of days does make a difference, as do many factors. 2012 was played on a Monday, but had the highest US ratings for five years, so the premise of this thread, that it's become less popular, doesn't wash.

    I do think the audiences were keen to see someone new in the mix and take the title, so that was a factor too.

    It was madness to play a final in the Miami mid-day sun and expect a high quality match. There was apparently a lot of wind too, which makes a difference, although there's not much they can do about that. Miami is usually windy, and it's part of what makes it stand out from some of the others.
     
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  5. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Do you know how difficult it is to get funds? We just got through building two new hard courts in our semi-public facility and it took years to get the money. And we still have to spend more to finish up some small things.

    Where is the money going to come to maintain grass courts? They need to be seeded, manicured, rolled, watered and what not.
     
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  6. Mick3391

    Mick3391 Professional

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    Spending billions on fast grass courts won't do a thing. The answer lies not with the players, no one wants to be controversial, but the fans.

    Beside grass is very slow these days, well Wimbledon is.

    I wish the players would say something, problem is most benefit from slo courts. What a trick to pull on Federer, guy trains hardcore in the 90's on fast courts, turns pro basically as a S&V, then they slow down the courts, change the rules mid career.

    Even if they had two slow GS, French and Aussie, and two fast, that would allow fans to see diversity, now it is BORING, I'm a huge tennis fan but I just can't watch this stuff. Imagine, after an hour of the Djoke/Murray OZ final my son and I just go to bed as it's so boring.
     
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  7. *Sparkle*

    *Sparkle* Professional

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    In this video of Andy post-match, he's talking to someone in the locker room about how they were both cramping as he tries to sit down on the bench without wincing. Just because he didn't get a trainer out doesn't mean he wasn't struggling. He probably thought it was better to hide it if he could.

    Video
     
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  8. Goosehead

    Goosehead Hall of Fame

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    so 'the fans' who like the tennis as it is, are all wrong..but you are right ?..so you demand change just to please yourself and not 'the fans' :confused:.ok..nice logic.
     
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  9. Relinquis

    Relinquis Hall of Fame

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    some goood comments above.

    The Harrison brothers do play in the Spanish vein. They're a couple of the few Americans who do it well imo, if they could add a solid net/transition game they could become solid all courters. They have good movement. it's shocking that a generation of americans hasn't tried to copy sampras and has emulated aggassi (and then nadal) instead. it's not like most courts int eh US are clay!

    Stevie johnson was a fighter in the aussie open. i liked his spirit.

    it seems only the french and a few non-spanish europeans are volleying with any regularity on the ATP. several of these guys are 30+ years old to close to it. WTA has even fewer examples (e.g. Vinci, bartoli on grass, etc...). No americans (or brits for that matter) are all courters on the ATP.

    there's something missing in the USA's copy of Spanish tennis. they're not finding the success, perhaps they should experiment with a more all court style?
     
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  10. Mick3391

    Mick3391 Professional

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    The "Fans" have gone away MORON. You actually think people like baseline error games?

    No wonder Tennis is a third rate sport with idiots like this.
     
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  11. fluffyyelloballz

    fluffyyelloballz Rookie

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    Tennis is pretty much seen now as a physical contest and not one of tennis skills. This is even explicitly stated in commentary by experts.
    Tennis 2013 has changed into something far, far from what it was say at the end of the 90s. Back then things were not so bad really. I watched highlights yesterday of Safin and Chang in the 99 Paris Masters semis. The court was fast and there were some amazing rallies and winners. It was more entertaining than the Miami final for sure. The new fans that are enjoying this are enjoying the sight of players involved in an endurance contest and not one of who has the most skill with a tennis racket or who executes the best strategy.
    Ark 28 please involve me with any petitions or other actions. I would be happy to contribute.
     
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  12. fluffyyelloballz

    fluffyyelloballz Rookie

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    There are enough people in the UK who like going to tennis events to keep it oversubscribed. But it does not mean the quality has not gone down. The people who will pay the high ticket fees are not bothered by the slowing down of the surface. They want a nice day out. And having attended the 02 last year no less than 3 times I can say that from the point of view of a nice day out, you get it. But you pay a lot for it.
    I remember going to Queens in 94. It was a lot cheaper and it was really cool to see the big servers and volleyers. I saw Edberg, Ivanisevic and I think it was Becker. And it was amazing. I looked at going this year but seeing the costs and thinking about what I would see, I decided against it.
    As for TV audiences not being higher for decades, well more Tennis is being televised on more channels and there are more ways to tell people about it. Has the hype machine in tennis ever been higher than now in these more developed times of marketing and PR? The branding of Fedal, and the big 4, and the slowing down of surfaces across the board meaning more hypeable rivalries and it is no surprise more people are tuning in. However we all know that just because something is popular does not mean it is good. And for people who like tennis just arguing that more people are watching is not going to cut it. They want to watch tennis and they want to watch quality tennis which is far from what we have been, more often than not, being served up the last few years.
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2013
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  13. ark_28

    ark_28 Hall of Fame

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    He is a big time! I agree with so much you have said! The powers that be are ruining the sport but making the game a war of attrition and not a battle of tennis skills and strategy!

    I will send an email and perhaps we can disuse strategy and the campaign moving forward you are right we the fans have to take direct action yes the sponsors supply the money but if fans turn away then sponsors are impotent we need to use that power to save our sport!
     
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  14. ark_28

    ark_28 Hall of Fame

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    I will send you an email in the next couple of days and we can discusss strategy, I agree with a lot you have said people are forgetting that in the 90's we had great baseliners too like, courier Chang Agassi yet the contrast in styles was possible due to the variation in court surface speeds sadly we have lost that now.
     
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  15. Laurie

    Laurie Professional

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    I will monitor this as well, I can always write a blog entry about this potential campaign if it takes off, every little bit will help.
     
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  16. ark_28

    ark_28 Hall of Fame

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    Absolutely Laurie :) thanks so much that's great! Yes it's a few of us but as you said earlier we know there are a lot of fans out there with the same feelings! It is time to at least let the powers that be see out frustration and build a movement! Nothing ventured nothing gained :)
     
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  17. Goosehead

    Goosehead Hall of Fame

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    im a moron ?? you're a moron you mean.."the fans" have not gone away..don't bloody watch it, if you don't like it, there arnt usually so many errors, stop screaming you little girl..

    you are out of touch with reality if you think people want servebot borefests with 1-3 shots because they don't..folk want rallies..and tennis isn't a third rate sport its just you are a third rate fan (a fake fan).
     
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  18. Goosehead

    Goosehead Hall of Fame

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    youre just a sad gimp that wants "lightning fast courts so john isner can win, where even 2 shot rallies are almost impossible"..you don't even know that the usta have no say in the courts of the masters events.
     
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  19. fluffyyelloballz

    fluffyyelloballz Rookie

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    Thanks. I appreciate it. Yes, Tennis in the 90s had some great baseliners like Kafelnikov and as someone mentioned here earlier, Enqvist, who played great on fast indoor surfaces. I used to love watching Enqvist in the indoor season and remember he had a magnificent battle with Becker that was so high in quality due to the contrasting styles.
    I would also like to mention the Agassi-Rafter battles of late 90s, early 2000s were as good as anything, if not better, than what we are seeing today with Murray and Djokovic. It was the contrast of styles, and the variety in surfaces that allowed those styles to develop, that made them such classics.
     
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  20. ark_28

    ark_28 Hall of Fame

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    With reference to the Davis Cup where I made that point yes tennis USA absolutely makes the call on the surface!

    You think I am sad? You are the one who appreciates a final like yesterday! Which was a borefest thanks to the slow courts we have now which are making the game a war or attrition not true battle of tennis skill!

    As Mick said with people like you a so called fan of the game it is no surprise that tennis is in dire straits at present.
     
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  21. Goosehead

    Goosehead Hall of Fame

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    some of the HC Should be faster (like Miami)...but forget fast grass with modern raquets that's why it was changed in the first place because fans wanted rallies..and players wanted less of a change coming off the clay season...

    some faster HC could be good..people go on about heavy tennis balls and lighter ones, why are therer different ones anyway :confused:
     
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  22. Goosehead

    Goosehead Hall of Fame

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    don't jump on the back of a post when someone else is slagging me off by agreeing with them.. if you don't like the greif back,

    i didn't say Miami final was great ..it wasn't great quality..but the breaks of serve made it unpredictable and therefore interesting in a different way..

    most of the time the quality isn't that low though...the qf sf and f at indian wells were good quality matches on a medium speed HC (dry desert air helps)
     
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  23. TTMR

    TTMR Hall of Fame

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    Once again, the solution to this is to stop watching the sport if it causes you so much resentment and misery, and stop posting online about tennis. If a critical mass follow suit, the "powers that be" will change things up one way or another to regain the lost audience.

    But if you continue to watch, you must on some level still find yourself entertained by the game, meaning you are just griping that things aren't perfect. If old, you are likely viewing the past through rose-coloured nostalgia, and if young you are concocting an imagined history. At no time was every final or semi-final guaranteed to be exciting, whether on a fast or slow court. What I've just said seems obvious, yet every time there is a "boring" match at the tail end of an event, people flock here to whine about it, praying for the Fast Court Fairy to make it all better.

    If you're still watching the "slow court grindfests" that you claim to hate, then you are not giving the ATP or ITF any incentive to change anything. They only care how many people will pay to attend, and how many people will sit at home and watch the ads. They don't care if the people like it, just that they're watching.
     
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  24. fluffyyelloballz

    fluffyyelloballz Rookie

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    Perhaps some people watch because they have a long association with tennis and are interested in how the sport is changing and are trying to figure out why and how they feel about it and what they can do about it? Don't forums allow them to do also discuss this? Isn't the point of a forum that it provides a community where people can meet like minds, or different ones, and discuss things? Just because you do not like what those people post about the sport does not mean they cannot post here. Perhaps you should follow your own advice and stop posting in threads you don't like. This thread quite clearly sets out to see if anyone using the forum would like to work together and try to do something about what they perceive to be the current situation. You clearly don't and perhaps that is where your input should end.

    And also not everyone is pleading for the fast court fairy. They want, I think, hard courts to be what hard courts originally were which was a medium ground between grass and clay. Or they want actual fast courts now and then to see a different style of tennis.
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2013
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  25. Mainad

    Mainad G.O.A.T.

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    The short answer to all of this is that if the fans no longer like to watch tennis, then they will stop watching it or pay to see it. Believe me, the powers-that-be will soon sit up and take notice if that were to happen!

    But there's just no evidence of it happening! Attendance at big tournaments is rising, not declining. Therefore the interest is still very much there.

    Fast surface, slow surface, all players will just have to adapt their games accordingly.
     
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  26. TTMR

    TTMR Hall of Fame

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    The difference is I enjoy threads like this and I enjoy debating about a topic I find interesting. I don't "dislike" what they have to say, I simply disagree with it. Meanwhile, I never post in the racquets or strings section of the site because I could not care less about racquets or strings. I don't enjoy the topic so I don't participate in it. However, I don't go into that area of the site and post threads about how much I hate the fact that people are fixated on racquets and strings.

    On the other hand, many contributors here claim not to enjoy matches such as Murray vs. Ferrer, and despite this match being played in very high heat and humidity, they watch it in its entirety, wasting three hours of their lives on something that bores them and then spend additional time posting about it, when they could have done something more personally productive instead.

    Only three explanations for such individuals are possible: 1. They are masochists; 2. They actually still find entertainment in the match or at least foresee potential for entertainment; 3. They are complainers who wish every match was an exhilarating high quality thriller, even though that has never been a reality in this sport or in any other at any time.

    I suspect '2' and '3' make up the bulk of the posters.

    And I'd agree with this desire. But I wouldn't appeal to the speed of the courts every time an uninteresting match is played. There were numerous dull matches at Wimbledon in the 90s (in fact, the reason they slowed down the courts) and there are numerous dull matches in the slow court hegemony now. Surface variety will not change the fact that some matches, even close ones, won't be very good.
     
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  27. Mick3391

    Mick3391 Professional

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    That's brilliant, solution, stop watching! I suppose you never had an original thought, I'm sure there are other ways.

    And they don't care, just like how they ruined boxing, they all made their money and don't care the sport is dead. They also don't care that they are wearing out players, my goodness, 5 hour 20 shot rally's does a toll on the body, but no one cares about the players.
     
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  28. Al Czervik

    Al Czervik Professional

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    One thing I thought was interesting is after the AO 2012 final, I noticed most people on non tennis message boards thought the match was amazing. But when I came back here, many people were actually disgusted by the marathon, war of attrition aspect. So, something you have to consider is the popularity overall, not just to diehard fans. The bottom line is you will never hurt attendance at majors because they are just too special for fans to stay away from going. You might be able to have an impact on smaller events with something like this, but overall, I think the sport's bigwigs just want pretty good TV ratings and attendance at majors.
     
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  29. Mick3391

    Mick3391 Professional

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    Exactly, this has little to do with the Miami Final, but tennis in general. How anyone can sit there hour on end and watch for errors blows my mind. I miss so much watching strategy and WINNERS.

    The poor players, they go out there for hours on end, tourney after tourney, then people are amazed when they are burned out or injured.

    If there is some petition, let me see the content and I'm with you.
     
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  30. TTMR

    TTMR Hall of Fame

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    They care about making money. If you persistently keep watching something, especially something you don't enjoy, you are endorsing their product. Sponsorship revenue is dependent on ratings. If people stop watching, fewer companies will bid on ad time and the demand for tennis commercial slots will fall.

    Not too long ago a favourite restaurant of mine drastically reduced their portion sizes while retaining the initial price. Did I keep patronizing that restaurant? Did I order twice to make up for the smaller portions? No, I stopped going.

    If you really hate what you're seeing, why subject yourself to it?
     
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  31. Mick3391

    Mick3391 Professional

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    Exactly. Some on this forum are so dense, they say "Tennis has a ton of fans", yes but what if it was actually entertaining? Perhaps MORE popular? Instead of a third rate sport.

    Look at the news after a GS final and you'll see about Basketball, Baseball, ANYTHING but Tennis and you'll see it's third rate, only interesting to die hard fans. In the past, everyone knew who Conner's was, McEnroe, but ask a 10 strangers, "Do you know who Rafael Nadal is", and most won't. When I was a little kid I knew who Conner's and Mac were.

    I'm a huge Tennis fan, think about this, and my son and I turn off the AO after one hour, we simply didn't want to sit there for hours on end to see who would make the most errors.

    I mean people will be contrarians, but contrarians can't you at least agree we should have perhaps 50% fast and 50% slow? Can you even agree to that? I mean don't you care that the players are destroying their bodies and other fans hate the boring error fests? I care that you like that and would support slow courts half of the time, what about you?
     
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  32. Mick3391

    Mick3391 Professional

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    We shouldn't have to subject ourselves to it, we do in the hopes of seeing a great match.

    I contacted ATP, going to do something.
     
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  33. TTMR

    TTMR Hall of Fame

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    Unless someone from the USTA is holding a gun to your head, no, you don't "have to" subject yourself to it.

    Are you saying you seriously went in with the expectation that Murray vs. Ferrer, a matchup you deplore, played in extreme heat and humidity, would yield a great match, filled with winners and aggressive play?

    If I held your point of view, I would have simply taken the odds that it wouldn't be a good match (especially by my beloved fast court standards) and done something else.


    Fair enough. I do hope you succeed. I want variety in the game of tennis as much as you do, but as I've said multiple times over, I don't expect every final or semi-final or match of importance to be a high quality affair. That's just not how sports are, and there's no sense complaining about it or blaming court conditions for players not playing their best. Speeding up courts will not fix that reality.
     
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  34. Mick3391

    Mick3391 Professional

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    Please attempt to understand what I am saying; I am saying we shouldn't have to subject ourselves to boring matches when we can have exciting, THRILLING matches.

    And AGAIN, this isn't about Murray and Ferrer, it's about Tennis in general, they STILL are slowing courts down, it's just so boring, why can't we have 50/50, 50% fast for people like us that enjoy intelligence and playing all aspects of the court, then 50% for people like you and others who like the mindless 5 hour endurance fests.
     
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  35. THE FIGHTER

    THE FIGHTER Hall of Fame

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    murrays cramping is the strategic equivalent of exposing one's king to purposely divert attention from the queen.
     
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  36. Mainad

    Mainad G.O.A.T.

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    This article from Simon Reed endorses the view that the slowness of today's courts are reducing tennis to a mere survival of the fittest test:

    http://uk.eurosport.yahoo.com/blogs...-tennis-now-just-case-last-man-143403118.html

    My question is: If this is turning off tennis fans as Reed and others on here claim, why have the big tournaments done this? They must have seen some advantage to doing it in the first place? :confused:
     
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  37. Gorecki

    Gorecki G.O.A.T.

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    mediocrity is the new black...
     
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  38. Mick3391

    Mick3391 Professional

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    The 1996 Wimble final was the final straw. It was considered boring, so they started slowing down courts. The problem is that they've gone way too far, now Wimbledon is slower than RG was in the mid 90's, I mean that's incredible.

    I think all here agree we should have half 90's fast courts AND slow courts, who can object to that?
     
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  39. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Mostly because they were American players.

    Of course they were also known worldwide, but only because there was a handful of countries which dominated the sport. Today it is much more global.
     
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  40. sportsfan1

    sportsfan1 Hall of Fame

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    Why can Haas or Dimitrov or Tomic/Dolgopolov play entertaining tennis on the same slow courts? It's partly the courts, but also the players as well.
     
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  41. wangs78

    wangs78 Hall of Fame

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    The biggest reason for tennis soaring popularity over the last 10 years has been ... Roger Federer. He's the Michael Jordan of tennis... he raised the standard at which the game is played, showed fierce competitiveness and most importantly, he WON, more than anyone had in the past. He played with a style that hardcore, casual and even non-fans could appreciate watching because of his graceful movement and all-court attacking game. And he has an image that anyone could get behind, and particularly the sponsors, whose ever-increasing financial contributions are very important to the sport. I think when Roger retires, Nadal, Djokovic and Murray can carry the banner for a bit, but none of them can replace what Roger represents to the sport. I totally get that there are fans who don't like him and prefer the other three, but no one can deny that Roger has broadened the appeal of this sport immensely all around the world.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2013
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  42. NJ1

    NJ1 Professional

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    :rolleyes:

    Dear oh dear, this is simply because the 2011 final was on a Monday when people were at work.
     
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  43. wangs78

    wangs78 Hall of Fame

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    Yes, but to play and win day in and day out? None of these guys have been able to do that. Meanwhile, players like Nadal and Djokovic have proven that in today's game, the ability to run all over the court and have never ending exchanges of groundstrokes wins you matches, because the biggest element then is your fitness. Creativity, boldness, and touch matter less and less. Its simply who can blast groundstrokes the longest until the other player makes a UE.

    However, I don't think it's just the surfaces that are to blame, it's also the poly strings. Nadal would not be able to hit with so much spin and keep the ball in the court if not for the poly strings.
     
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  44. monfed

    monfed Guest

    Yes I believe we do, but will our voices be heard and if so how do we make our opinion be heard or make it matter?
     
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  45. Rjtennis

    Rjtennis Hall of Fame

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    I think it is a problem because the casual fan wants to see people crush winners and hit a few aces which slower courts make it harder to do. I also don't think the general public is interested in seeing 5 hour tennis matches. Faster courts would add further variety and shorten matches which would be good for the game. The Miami final was a perfect illustration of the problem. Nothing but service breaks and unforced errors. Even a huge fan like me didn't really enjoy watching that.
     
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  46. wangs78

    wangs78 Hall of Fame

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    I'm not sure how much it affects the tournament economics, but longer matches also means more money spent on overpriced food and drinks and the like. Can't imagine that this will have too much of an impact on the amount of revenue a tournament generates, but who knows, maybe it actually is significant. I do know that movie theaters basically make all of their profits from the overpriced sodas, nachos and popcorns they sell (ticket revenue goes to the film studios).
     
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  47. Mick3391

    Mick3391 Professional

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    Great post! Some of course will deny reality, but yea, actors, musicians, famous athlete's are fascinated by Federer.

    Personally I believe when Fed retires, tennis will die, that is until another star comes along. It's SO much more than just playing good, it's Charisma, grace, seeming effortless play, great shots, same with all sports, the greats capture all of our imagination.

    Look at Larry Holmes, top 5 Heavyweight of all time, awesome, no one cared. That's how it will be with Murray or Djokovich, imagine the public being excited about those two? Nadal can carry it a bit, but not much.
     
    #97
  48. Mick3391

    Mick3391 Professional

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    One other thing, look at Feds trip to South America a few months ago, they went WILD. They'd stand in line for hours just to get a look at him, it was NUTS, he was like a rock star in a dive bar.

    Tsonga, a great player was with him, yet no one cared. They wouldn't care if any of the other players showed up either, Fed just has IT.

    It's nice to see someone able to actually do ALL PARTS of Tennis, not just baseline. Baseline is important, but so is mid court, net, Tennis is much more than just killing it from the baseline, and hopefully we'll see a return to exciting all court matches.
     
    #98
  49. ruerooo

    ruerooo Legend

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    That last sentence was kind of funny. :lol:

    I think we as fans do have a duty to the sport, actually. I just don't think it's what the OP thinks, I don't think.
     
    #99
  50. ark_28

    ark_28 Hall of Fame

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    I will send you an email as well at the weekend so we can discuss a strategy and get this campaign in place.
     

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