Possible Davis Cup and Fed Cup Format changes

Lukhas

Legend
http://itf.uberflip.com/i/623806-itfworld-winter-2015
Page 11-12.

David Haggerty, the new chairman of the ITF has proposed the following:
- "Final Four", where the semi-finals and finals would be played during a week on a neutral ground;
- First round "bye" for the winner of the previous edition to avoid facing relegation if a first round loss were to happen.

Haggerty says that the players he has talked with were fairly receptive to these changes. He's also thinking about shifting the format from best of five to best of three.

As far as I'm concerned, the "Final Four" basically is not a ploy to improve DC and FC "tennistically", but to make it more marketable. For me a neutral ground basically removes one of the most interesting things in the current DC/FC: the ability to see your country's best players almost all at once and cheer for them outside of the occasions where they happen to play a tournament in their home country... if their home country has a tournament relevant to their interests to begin with.

As far as tennis goes, if the ITF truly cares about crowning the best tennis country and not the country that happens to have a Top 5 player (or two), they should force the captains to use more than two players, and IMO at least four. It wouldn't exactly solve the issue, but it would balance it somewhat. If you want to push it forward, you could make for example the ties composed of three singles for one or two doubles, with three different singles players. Also, the idea of the DC/FC not happening every year (or at least, not to crown a new country every year) is something that deserves some thought. Unlikely considering the ITF is fairly proud of the DC being "the largest annual international team competition in world sport".

I think the home crowd support (or lack thereof) and the Bo5 format are both critical ingredients of the Davis Cup, which leads for me, even more often than slams, to players shifting the odds and overall memorable matches. As far as France is concerned, I think for example of Leconte, who hasn't been easily forgiven (huge, huge euphemism) for his match and runner-up speech after his defeat in the French Open final and coming back from a serious injury eventually defeating Sampras in straights during the final in 1991. Or less gloriously, Berlocq defeating Simon in 2013.
 

Deanjam

Professional
Neutral venues is stupid. The crowds are the best part of Davis Cup. Leave it alone. Let players skip it if they want. Not every tournament needs to be about the big four.
 

Bobby Jr

G.O.A.T.
His neutral venue argument is pretty silly. Davis Cup needs a home crowd for the same reason most football does - it gives an element of home support etc... Imagine if France and Switzerland had had to play their DC final in the US or Shanghai or Spain. It wouldn't have had nearly the same atmosphere.
 

NaBUru38

Rookie
Neutral venues is absurd. Foreign players would never sell more tickets than local players.

If top players are skipping the Davis Cup, the ITF should improve the schedule.

For example, two rounds should be played in February and two in September.
 

Fedinkum

Legend
Basically they want to stage Davis Cup in India, China, Qatar, Doha, etc where there are golds to be found. Awful idea, lost of tradition, lost of home crowd atmosphere, these business people/ceo are real f_ckers.
 
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