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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2004, 12:06 AM Thread Starter
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US Olympic team

Six (6) players total. Four singles players, two doubles teams.

The US team has rules about who gets on.

1) Must have made themselves available to play Fed Cup in the past two years

2) That could get Jenn, but let's assume it doesn't

Let's check out the options

The US team is trying to shoehorn seven players into six spots

Top six singles

04 2943 DAVENPORT, LINDSAY USA
07 2519 WILLIAMS, SERENA USA
08 2300 CAPRIATI, JENNIFER USA
12 1904 RUBIN, CHANDA USA
16 1480 WILLIAMS, VENUS USA
28 1069 RAYMOND, LISA USA

Top three doubles

07 2591 NAVRATILOVA, MARTINA USA
09 2236 RAYMOND, LISA USA
11 1904 DAVENPORT, LINDSAY USA

The top three singles players go, at the very least.
That's Lindsay, Jenn and Serena.
Let's further assume that we now explicitly take the highest ranked doubles player, as opposed to the non-verbal 'understanding' of previous years.
That's Nav.

Captain's Picks - You want Venus to play doubles with Serena. As since she's #5 in US singles, and defending Olympic champ you can have her without fuss or muss.

So now our team is
Singles - Lindsay, Jenn, Serena + ?
Doubles - Williams/Williams, Navratilova/?

You only get one more player. That player is Chanda Rubin, Meghann Shaughnessy or Lisa Raymond. Raymond is ranked higher than Shaughnessy in singles and doubles.
Having Venus playing both singles and doubles, and CHnada only play doubles is a possibility. I think Chanda, as one of the four highest ranked singles players, is probably getting on the team.

If BJK was Captain, the six players would be Serena, Lindsay, Venus, Chanda, Lisa and Nav.

But Venus is defending champ, so I think the team is

singles - Serena, Venus, Lindsay plus Chanda or Jenn

Doubles - Nav plus Chanda if Jenn plays singles, or Lisa if Chanda plays singles

But bear in mind, the top FOUR singles players may be guaranteed spots. That's makes picks #5 and #5 Nav and Venus.

***********
USA Rankins
***********

Code:
Singles

04 2943 DAVENPORT, LINDSAY  USA 
07 2519 WILLIAMS, SERENA  USA 
08 2300 CAPRIATI, JENNIFER  USA 
12 1904 RUBIN, CHANDA  USA 
16 1480 WILLIAMS, VENUS  USA 
28 1069 RAYMOND, LISA  USA 
37 _878 SHAUGHNESSY, MEGHANN  USA 
42 _785 FRAZIER, AMY  USA 
45 _748 HARKLEROAD, ASHLEY  USA 
50 _683 GRANVILLE, LAURA  USA 
52 _657 CRAYBAS, JILL  USA 
92 _403 REEVES, SAMANTHA  USA 
95 _392 LEE-WATERS, LINDSAY  USA 

112 327 PERRY, SHENAY  USA 
113 322 SNYDER, TARA  USA 
118 287 ASHLEY, TERYN  USA 
120 285 STEVENSON, ALEXANDRA  USA 
125 268 IRVIN, MARISSA  USA 
138 232 WASHINGTON, MASHONA  USA 
139 230 TU, MEILEN  USA 
151 198 SPEARS, ABIGAIL  USA 
155 196 HOPKINS, JENNIFER  USA 
164 182 MATTEK, BETHANIE  USA 
165 180 HAYNES, ANGELA  USA 
176 169 MC CAIN, KELLY  USA 

201 134 OSTERLOH, LILIA  USA 
202 134 CARGILL, ANSLEY  USA 
209 125 BIELIK, BEA  USA 
222 115 SELES, MONICA  USA 
226 111 SCHLUKEBIR, KRISTEN  USA 
227 110 PETERSON, JEWEL  USA 
245 100 OSPINA, DIANA  USA 

Doubles - But we know the US team WON'T go by ranking

07 2591 NAVRATILOVA, MARTINA  USA 
09 2236 RAYMOND, LISA  USA 
11 1904 DAVENPORT, LINDSAY  USA 
15 1625 SHAUGHNESSY, MEGHANN  USA 
34 _894 TU, MEILEN  USA 
37 _852 MORARIU, CORINA  USA 
43 _792 RUBIN, CHANDA  USA 
69 _568 SPEARS, ABIGAIL  USA 
74 _532 GRANVILLE, LAURA  USA 
76 _523 REEVES, SAMANTHA  USA 
78 _514 WASHINGTON, MASHONA  USA 
80 _474 ASHLEY, TERYN  USA 
89 _368 HARKLEROAD, ASHLEY  USA

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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2004, 12:34 AM
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Jennifer has remained eligible for Fed Cup the last two years, so that is a non-issue.

Zina said that Jennifer has expressed interest in playing for her country, and that while they have not talked yet - they have a meeting scheduled. Zina later said "All is good". They have a good relationship, and pretty sure things will work out.

As far as rankings are concerned - my understanding is that they don't have to go by them *(but that it is recommended that they do). Remember the big conflict with Lisa Raymond and BJK when she was not selected (and had the higher ranking).
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2004, 12:38 AM
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Eligibility rules say that you must have played 1 Fed Cup match over the past two years I'm assuming. And Jennifer hasn't done that. Rubin will get the spot, unless its only Top 3 it'll be Lindsay, Venus, and Serena.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2004, 12:41 AM
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two teams per nation?

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2004, 01:09 AM
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Excellent breakdown and assesment.It really cleared things up for me.Thanks a mil.

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2004, 01:38 AM
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I think Navratilova indicated that she hopes to qualify in singles as well..

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2004, 02:18 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Plear
Eligibility rules say that you must have played 1 Fed Cup match over the past two years I'm assuming. And Jennifer hasn't done that. Rubin will get the spot, unless its only Top 3 it'll be Lindsay, Venus, and Serena.
Plear - It may have changed, but two years ago, that rule read 'must make herself AVAILABLE to play'. You don't have to play, you just have to tell them you're ready to practice and play IF they ask. As long as Ashley Cargill told the USTA she was available, they could pick her for the Olympic team, despite her never having played a Fed Cup match. Think about all the times somebody was on the Fed Cup team but didn't get to play.

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2004, 07:22 AM
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The rule is still the same. You have to make yourself available in at least 2 of the years from 2001-04, with at least one of those coming in 2003 or 2004. Making one's self "available" only requires you to play if asked. However, if you are asked, then you MUST play, or it doesn't count toward elgibility requirements.

To borrow Volcana's Cargill example, let's assume, for the sake of demonstration, that Cargill had not yet completed her Olympic elgibility coming into 2004, but by making herself available for the opening round of Fed Cup (the only one before the selection deadline), she did. Now, let's suppose there were a rash of injuries (unfortunately, not so far-fetched), and in the scramble to find healthy bodies at the last minute, the US got down to Cargill. Suppose Cargill now says, "Sorry, I've got such a packed schedule now that I couldn't possibly play that week." She would basically be rescinding her own elgibility, as she is revoking her "availability".

Or, if Cargill said yes, but got hurt herself the week before Fed Cup, and was unable to play. That would make her inelgible. The rules have no sympathy for injury, or extenuating circumstances. It's much like, say, track and field. You could be your country's dominant 400 meter runner, winning meet after meet. But get hurt and miss the Olympic qualifying event, and you're S.O.L. (Unless they've changed that rule in recent years.)

One thing is puzzling. In some articles, it says Zina hasn't spoken to Jen. Yet in other interviews, she said she "went down the list until we got to Serena". At the time she made her selections, Jen was ranked higher than Serena. So something doesn't jibe.

As for the Olympics itself, since it's set up like a regular tournament, I've always felt they should have followed similar guidelines. Every player in the top, say, 50 who has met elgibility requirements, and who wants to go, should be able to go. That still leaves 14 slots to be filled in. If necessary, expand the draws by another 16 slots, leaving 48 direct entries, and 32 players to play off in a preliminary "qualifying" round. They could even fudge that around a bit by taking the 40 highest ranked players entered, and 8 wildcards for distribution of nations purposes, as D.E.'s, and 8 more wildcards in the prelim round. And I'd like to see a team event, la TeamTennis. The beauty of the TeamTennis format is that it would be a true team event, you would get a lot of players involved without using a lot of time or courts, you don't need an odd number of rubbers within a tie to decide a winner, and the match would not be decided until the very last point, regardless of how lopsided the early scoring might be. Plus, it gives the opportunity for more players to get involved.

Another interesting possibility would be an Olympic "Race" format. For each Fed/Davis Cup tie in which a player makes her/himself available, they get X number of points (probably based on their ranking, as having higher ranked players play adds to the "value" of the event). And for every match they win, they get QP added to that total. So, obviously, the higher ranked the opponent, the more O.R. points you'd gather. The top players could still catch up after missing the early rounds by beating other top players in later rounds, but they'd be chancing their teammates making it that far. When it comes time to select Olympic teams, go by the O.R. points, regardless of ranking. Whoever has supported Fed/Davis Cup with the most regularity and success would go, assuming they still want to use the Olympic carrot to encourage Fed/Davis Cup support. And better yet, seed the players at the Olympics based on O.R. points. That would discourage high-ranked players from blowing off ties when they feel they have national Olympic spots clinched, as they could be dropped in the sedings and have to face a tougher draw.

Just a few thoughts, not that anyone involved with the game listens to what I say.
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