Originally Posted by TCF
Yup, the cost thing is a total crutch used by Americans. Kids who show talent even in the first free clinic have opportunities to get training.
Vicky Duval's parents are both doctors, so I don't think they fall into the category of many other parents.
And yes, I know of some people who have gotten free training because their children showed promise at a young age.
I know of some others who are very good athletes but never made it that far and it was because of money. One girl made it to 4 star level and is playing DI tennis but I know her parents struggled with providing shoes, strings, lessons, etc. She is a tremendous athlete and excelled in track and field and did well in tennis, but I think college will be as far as her tennis gets because her parents did not have the money to go further early in her tennis life.
There must be hundreds of similar stories.
I would venture to guess that kids who get "gobbled up" and get free training and equipment are a fraction of the talented athletes whose parents simply cannot afford training and were not in the right place/right time to be offered such things.
I've also noticed that a lot of the people who get such offers have boisterous parents who are good at marketing their children. Good example - the Parks Sisters.
Those parents are over the top with their proclamations, starting a website when the girls were very young, boisterious, obnoxious, etc -- and the girls got free training, equipment sponsors, and are very good players who may have a shot at the pros.
But when I knew them as little girls, they did not seem more remarkable than many other little girls with normal parents.