WTA on court coaching trial...men next???

pound cat

The Sony Ericsson WTA Tour informed Tennis Canada it has chosen the Rogers Cup presented by National Bank to lauch an historic on-court coaching test.

Therefore, players will be able to request their coach to come on court once per set as well as during set breaks. If a player takes a medical time out or bathroom break, the opposing player only may request her coach without losing one of her rights to do so. Coaching timeouts will be conducted during changeovers and at mid-set intervals. In either case, there will be no delay of play permitted. Coaches will be assigned designated seats to ensure easy access to the court.

For televised matches, all coaching timeouts will be filmed and available for broadcast to TV viewers on a tape delayed basis.

“We are very anxious to see the reactions of the fans, players and coaches following this new initiative”, declared Eugene Lapierre, Tournament Director for the Rogers Cup presented by National Bank. “It’s very innovative, especially from a TV perspective. It is as if fans were able to hear a hockey coach’s dressing room pep talk in between periods.”

On-court coaching test is the latest in a series of innovations unveiled in 2006 such as 1) pre-match player interviews so fans can hear how a player feels just moments before stepping onto the court; 2) coaches interviews during matches; 3) placing of wireless microphones on players during practice, as well as on court and on the umpire’s chair to bring the true sound of play to the viewers at home; 4) coordination with broadcasters to reduce on-air pre-match warm ups so that TV viewers are taken right to match action; and 5) the implementation of the new electronic line-calling system in select tournaments.

“I think on-court coaching will be really interesting, both for players and fans,” said Sony Ericsson WTA Tour World no. 7 and former US Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova, of Russia. “This will add a new story to the match and I think that fans will enjoy this new element. I know that as players we are all interested to see how this test works out.”

Tests will also be carried out at the Pilot Pen tournament held in New Haven, Connecticut, the week following the Rogers Cup.

Will AtP be next if it works out???

Aeropro joe

well some coaches have already been coaching their players using signals, like uncle toni nadal was accused of during the clay court season but i think it is stupid, just another way to slow down the matches if the players feel the match slipping away. think of mary pierce last year with all the timeouts and massages, now someone can also get an on-court talk with their coach, give me a break. (no pun intended) :)


sounds dumb to me. just another attempt to boost tv ratings. i've always enjoyed tennis for it being a true individual sport.


seroiusly anyone who compares this to hawkeye is ********. th argument that they're both the same because it "encourages growth of the sport" has lost their mind. honestly, tennis is one of the few truly individual sports left out there. it wasn't sampras's wicked serve and leaping forehand alone that made me consider him my favorite ever, it was more getting over a coach's terminal illnes, or getting over severe dehydration for your country, or throwing up and playin anyway. getting through the crunch times on your own, thats what tennis is all about. it would be a shame to see all these players that dont have mental toughness to get it implanted in them from coaches. yes that woudl raise the overall level of play, but i dont give a damn, you're eliminating one of the most important characteristics of the game, its mental aspect. after that you become a sport just like any other, basketball, football, whatever, you just follow whatever play your coach lays out for you. it would be truly a loss to see tennis reduced to just ball bashing.


Like coaching is going to help. If I was playing against Roger Federer and getting destroyed, do you think advice like "oh, hit some topspin to his backhand!" is going to work? I don't think so.


Hall of Fame
they do it anyway thats y the change is coming. there getting sick of people complaining of coaching so just make i legal i guess is the idea. not a good one but its there tour.

pound cat

Definitely favours "made it already" players who have coaches. Not fair to the up and comers who can't yet afford a coach.

Bad elitiste idea.


Yeah I thought right away it sucks for the players that can't afford a coach, I mean they can hardely afford the airfare to events and the taxs on their houses, neverless a coach.


Probably it's was a choice between bad and worse. Coaching takes place anyway right now for every match, so make it legale won't really change much IMO, it will be more fun, I don't think it's a dumb idea. I wonder if they really going to record and let into air these talks between coach and player, that's gonna be fun if "yes" :)

I agree it's not very nice towards low-ranked players with no coach.


Hall of Fame
Bad idea too! It's something that'll slow down the game!
If they want to make a change, it should be regarding the abuse of the timeouts. Maybe a 1 point penalty for calling an injury timeout. This would limit it to players who're really hurting and want to keep going?

pound cat

Roforot said:
Bad idea too! It's something that'll slow down the game!
If they want to make a change, it should be regarding the abuse of the timeouts. Maybe a 1 point penalty for calling an injury timeout. This would limit it to players who're really hurting and want to keep going?

They Hawk-eye challenge system would slow down the game, but what it's done is eliminate arguing with the ump and the players just get on with the point.

On court coaching throws in the human element, and ,may work if the player trusts his coach comletely. Otherwise... could be a lot of upset players


One of the worst gimmicks ever.
Whenever they say something adds "story" or "drama" to the game, it's just a piece of crap.
No wonder it's adopted in wta. They tend to look for some kind of cat fight or something other than their quality of game itself to sell. Have some confindence in your product!
I can see the reason, but I'm getting too tired of the b.s. they come up with.
Though it's easy to understand why they don't want to enforce the rule on their money player(s), legalizing cheating as a solution is just ridiculous.

Adv. Edberg

Yep, it happened. Watching Bastad 250 now and they allow on court coaching now.

The dumbing down tennis has officially begun. Fast 4 next, then probably playing in the dark with neon balls