Originally Posted by sureshs
Why keep comparing Western Europe and US? One of the reasons for the strong tennis pipeline in Europe is the way to finish secondary school at age 16 and the guarantee of social services (unemployment assistance, job placement assistance, medical benefits) for players who don't make it as a pro. There was a poster from Germany in another section of this forum who said he was going for becoming a pro but did not worry about failure because his government would always provide for him regardless. You cannot separate such issues from tennis. I am not saying it is good or bad, but in the US a failed tennis pro can be in the poor house very fast.
Actually, we were comparing to all of Europe, including eastern Europe. And the reason we keep comparing there system(s) to ours is becuase theirs seems to be working much better at the moment. That seems like a good reason to me. As a more serious response to your statement above regarding the social welfare and education system in these countries, it varies quite a bit by country. Not all students in all countries graduate at 16, most contraries have dual tracks where it may take to 18 or 19 to graduate. Social welfare systems vary from country to country as well.