Li Na and the birth of the fifth slam

Discussion in 'Pro Match Results and Discussion' started by singer, Jan 29, 2011.

  1. singer

    singer Rookie

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    Here is a speculation on my part

    In the next 5 to 10 years, we may see a 5th slam getting added, Beijing Open.

    With Li Na's achievements, I think conservatively at least 30 to 40 million new Chinese fans will come on the scene over the next 2-4 years. As with other things Chinese in the past decade, there will be a power shift in Tennis.

    I think a tournament gets the same respect as the slams when everyone shows up there to compete, there are men, women, boys and girls championships, enough coverage by Media and decent price money.. If there are 50 million Chinese fans, that is enough of a base to have all this and more...

    If and when that happens over the next 5 to 10 years, we can all credit Li Na for that.

    (ATP World Tour Finals does not quite have the same prestige as the slams , may be because of the format )
     
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  2. skip1969

    skip1969 Legend

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    not sure there is enough room on the calender for another slam. having said that, one never knows what the future holds, and china is an untapped market. not sure the traditionalists in tennis will except anything other than the 'balance' of the four, old-school slams.
     
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  3. ledwix

    ledwix Hall of Fame

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    That would be cool, yeah, but isn't Li Na's career almost over?
     
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  4. jamesblakefan#1

    jamesblakefan#1 G.O.A.T.

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    Nope, no chance in hell. Aussie Open is already known as the slam of the Asia/Pacific, and the ATP/WTA could put YEC there but not enough to add a slam. A slam wasn't added when the game grew in Eastern Europe, South America doesn't have a slam. Just no.
     
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  5. scotus

    scotus Legend

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    China might very well come up with a tournament with a larger prize money than the 4 slam events.

    But it will be difficult to gain the slam distinction.
     
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  6. InvisibleSoul

    InvisibleSoul Hall of Fame

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    If you suddenly added a fifth slam, you can throw all the old slam records out the window. Laver's two calendar Grand Slams will immediately be discredited because he played in an era where there were only four slams.
     
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  7. powerangle

    powerangle Legend

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    Plus, players now would have more opportunities to rack up the number of slams and so old slam records would mean less/more and all the stats would get "screwed up".
     
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  8. Araxen

    Araxen Rookie

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    Personally I think the current calender year needs to be scraped so a new one can be put in it's place. The slams need to be spread out better. We have the AO in Jan and then wait far too many months for the next one. There should be one slam per quarter.
     
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  9. Fee

    Fee Legend

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    The ITF and the Grand Slam committee will never allow this to happen, sorry.

    The ATP and the WTA will never sanction a tournament that pays bigger prize money than the slams, it would have to be under the table appearance fees like Dubai.
     
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  10. LameTennisPlayer

    LameTennisPlayer Professional

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    I sure as hell hope it doesn't change in the next few years! I plan on take over a month in the May/June area to watch those two slams!
     
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  11. Legend of Borg

    Legend of Borg Legend

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    So you have RG in the summer, Wimbledon in the autumn, and USO.....

    in the winter?

    Nah.

    I'll pass.
     
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  12. Of course you could have three quarters, with a major bookending each, resulting in four slams in 9 months. Pretty simple, though it will never happen.
     
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  13. darth_federer

    darth_federer Banned

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    Both india and china should have slams. Plenty of room between AO and FO.
     
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  14. Bud

    Bud Bionic Poster

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    Yeah, screw the player's health and all that .. lol
     
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  15. darth_federer

    darth_federer Banned

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    Today's players are coddled. They just look for things to complain about and the uninformed masses eat it up.
     
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  16. Bud

    Bud Bionic Poster

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    Li Na was definitely doing her share of complaining during the final :wink:
     
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  17. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    Should move the US grand slam offshore to China like all the rest of the economy - call it the Walmart China Open.
     
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  18. Bud

    Bud Bionic Poster

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    Lol.. outsource the USO to China or India
     
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  19. singer

    singer Rookie

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    Alright everyone, the skepticism is well taken. The outsourcing comment is quite funny!!

    Think about this. Till 1989, Grand Slam was just a concept in people's minds, a powerful and extraordinarily significant one but just a concept. "In 1989, the Grand Slam tournaments joined forces for the first time to form the Grand Slam Committee which, among other responsibilities, administers the Grand Slam rules."

    4 of the ITF's national associates own and organize these independent cornerstones of the sport.

    And, the ITF sanctions and works closely with the four Grand Slams tournaments through its presence on the Grand Slam Committee, and supports each event with administrative, officiating and media services.

    Given all this, it is only a matter of politics and need to effect changes. Even more conservative than Tennis is Cricket and look at the changes there in the past decade or two when the center of gravity of power shifted from England to the sub-continent due to the audience size ( and the money ).

    With respect to the schedule, I agree the gap between AO and FO is too huge. They can definitely fit in 5 grand slams and an optional year end championship in 11 months, leaving 1 month for vacation. That is pretty much what happens now anyways, except we are just going to take two of the existing tournaments and make it a a two week grand tournament.

    So, I do not think it is logistically impossible.
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2011
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  20. PeterPanda

    PeterPanda Semi-Pro

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    I totally agree it even says so in the label that it's the slam of the Asia/Pacific.
     
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  21. Hood_Man

    Hood_Man Legend

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    Not necessarily, AO in January, RG in April, WIM in July and USO in October.

    Not that it will happen but it's fun to speculate.
     
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  22. Legend of Borg

    Legend of Borg Legend

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    USO in October could get fun with some rain showers delaying the whole slam for about a week.
     
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  23. jwbarrientos

    jwbarrientos Hall of Fame

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    No way, slams is about tradition and prestige, LI NA is one WTA player, just that (BTW she's soll and funny)
     
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  24. Fee

    Fee Legend

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    Aww, its almost cute. But no. The Grand Slam committee is where all the money and power is, why do you think they haven't changed their schedules even though they have been asked to? Because they don't have to. They have all the money in tennis, those 4 tournaments set the schedule. And they will not be diluting their power by inviting someone else on board.

    RG in April? Schedule it for 3 weeks because it could take that long with all the rain. Same thing for USO in October.
     
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  25. NamRanger

    NamRanger G.O.A.T.

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    Except neither Eastern Europe or South America have the economic power of Southeast Asia / China, nor do they have the political influence that those said countries have (China, Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, etc.)



    I think you severely underestimate how much influence the South Eastern part of Asia has (including China of course, since parts of China are in the area I'm talking about).



    If tennis becomes a significant sport in China for instance, you bet they would push hard for a slam.
     
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  26. jamesblakefan#1

    jamesblakefan#1 G.O.A.T.

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    But if you do this you basically throw off all of the records, history associated with these slams by adding a new one. You can't just become a slam overnight. These touneys have a historical significance, one that can not be replicated by slapping a label on it. A new slam would automatically be the red headed stepchild and be looked at as less prestigious. It's not within the realm of realism to think that you can just call an event a slam and expect the fans to accept it. That would not happen.
     
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  27. jamesblakefan#1

    jamesblakefan#1 G.O.A.T.

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    Worst case scenario, the Aussie Open moves to Asia and becomes the 'Asian Open'. But there's no chance of adding an additional slam outside of the 4 we have now. Record keeping purposes alone is reason enough why this would never happen. Discussion of moving the AO to Asia is more in the realm of possibility, but adding another slam outside of the 4 we have now would NEVER happen, regardless of how much money China puts up.
     
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  28. NamRanger

    NamRanger G.O.A.T.

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    Doubt it, the ITF would allow China to open up their own slam if they ponied up enough money and had enough political clout in the tennis world to do it.



    The game constantly evolves. It may not happen during our lifetimes, but it could happen somewhere down the line. Who knows. I think you shouldn't just speak about it in such an absolute when Asia has huge potential and has a serious amount of money.
     
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  29. jamesblakefan#1

    jamesblakefan#1 G.O.A.T.

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    Agree to disagree. It's not as simple as that, adding another slam would effectively p!ss all over the current record books. Like I said, moving AO to Asia or having it alternate between Australia/Asia is a more realistic possibility, but there will NEVER be more than 4 slams, period.
     
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  30. usta2050

    usta2050 Rookie

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    In 10 to 20 years, China will be so screwed. It's running out of water, food, and oil. That's a big problem for a population of 1.5 billion people. BTW, it's running out of rare earth metal too. The last 10 years is as good as it gets for China. Let's see.
     
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  31. singer

    singer Rookie

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    >BTW, it's running out of rare earth metal too.

    No, not at all. There is so much abundance of it, the price has crashed. China is doing those shenanigans ( export controls ) to prop up the price.
     
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  32. SStrikerR

    SStrikerR Hall of Fame

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    Nobody gives a s*** about tennis in china. Nice try though.
     
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  33. singer

    singer Rookie

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    SStrikerR, true currently and definitely outside of China. But we are talking about 10 years from now. If 50 million more Chinese care about it for whatever reason, now we are talking about a different scenario, a 5th slam or not.
     
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  34. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Hall of Fame

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    If South America didn't get a slam after Bueno won 7 of them I don't see China getting one for Li Na making one Final. Schiavone actually won one and Italy has been a dominant force in the Fed Cup for several year now and no one is talking of making the Italian Open a slam.

    Also, as has been mentioned, good luck shuffling around the entire WTA Calender to make Beijing into a 2 week event given that it currently sits so close between the US Open and the YEC...you'd need to move it or players could be even more out of it for the YEC then some of them are now.

    One player is not going to be enough to make the entire calender change and to create a 5th major. Maybe if China in the next few years had more players like Li Na, or were able to keep multiple players in the top 10 or have several players from their country winning majors...but wait...Russia has that and no one is planning on giving them one either at the moment.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2011
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  35. aceX

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    If it was all about money why isn't Doha a GS?
     
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  36. singer

    singer Rookie

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    In Doha's case, it is all purely financial. But if enough fan base ( say 50M to 60M ) develops in China, that is a totally different vibe from Doha.. No comparison.
     
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  37. fhdowntheline

    fhdowntheline Rookie

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    Now, was that a

    1) Nobody gives a s*** about "Tennis in China"
    OR
    2) Nobody (in China) "gives a s*** about Tennis"

    OR
    BOTH being true ?
     
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  38. Sentinel

    Sentinel Talk Tennis Guru

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    Not to nitpick, but Australia ain't Asia. By putting Asia in the name, doesn't mean Asia has a slam.
     
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  39. rickwestland

    rickwestland New User

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    Not Li, she is no Djokovic. She said she would only play for herself, and she seemed to look down on her Chinese fans.
     
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  40. tacou

    tacou Legend

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    this is the point people are missing. its not about tennis, its about asia. italy is not asia. China doesn't care about record books and neither will tennis if enough money is inolved.

    maybe they won't get a slam but if they offer 5mil for a winner at the beiijing open you dont think it will attract the top 128 in the world? it might be a 5th slam but if tennis blow up in China you can bet tennis will go to China
     
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  41. jamesblakefan#1

    jamesblakefan#1 G.O.A.T.

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    Someone mentioned earlier that no regular events are allowed to award more prize money than the slams.
     
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  42. jman

    jman Semi-Pro

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    AO is actually known as 'The Grandslam of Asia/Pacific'... so no need for another grandslam. Keep it simple with only 4 slams.
     
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  43. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Hall of Fame

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    The argument the poster was making was how Li Na's Achievements should help influence China getting a major. Making one slam final isn't enough to draw merit to a country having a slam, there was a huge fanbase for tennis is South America when Bueno and Sabatini were on the tour and winning slams and making finals, Bueno got parade's, did South America get a major? Well, no. South America doesn't even have a big name tournament stop really. China at least already has that.

    Also, given the current social and politic atmosphere in China, who knows what it would take to even set them up with a slam level tournament. The goverment makes big demands of its players, who knows, they may make demands of the tour...what kind I can't say but it would be a lot of negotiating probably.
     
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  44. PCXL-Fan

    PCXL-Fan Hall of Fame

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    They'd need to make it an indoor roofed stadium with airconditioning given how polluted the air is in most chinese cities.

    Though if its in a less polluted area I'd like to see a grasscourt events.
     
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  45. topspin182

    topspin182 Banned

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    So why is Wimbledon allowed if FO is the slam of Europe? Why one slam per continent? And Australia isn't even in the same continent as China!!??
     
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