Then someone else says "Incidentally, most tennis experts agree that Graf was decidedly uninvolved as the number one player and not an attribute to the WTA off court. I'm not trying to be offensive..." but that sentence pretty much sounds offensive.
It made me curious, what are the contributions of the current crop of top players to the tennis organization? I don't know if any of them play leadership roles in the WTA and have made significantly more contributions than Steffi (at least from a perception standpoint). If they don't, I wonder then why Steffi seems to keep getting singled out for her supposed non-contribution. Was it because she was the #1 player who came after the folks who were so involved?
They need to try to find a reason to justify their dislike/hatred of Steffi. It would be so much more emotionally healthy for them to just say, "I am biased against Germans even though the war ended like 68 years ago," or "My favorite is <insert name here> and I really, really need my favorite to be considered the best ever by everyone, but my favorite's claim to best ever is not as strong as some other players' claims, so I really, really need to find a way to diminish the other players. Yes, I am that shallow and insecure."
Like I said, Steffi was not a serve-on-the-council type of leader, especially because so much of serving-on-the-council is just having to bullshit or listening to other people bullshit. But when there were really important issues, Steffi acted.
When Seles, ASV, Martinez, Sukova, and the others played that exhibition instead of Brighton, Shriver, who was WTA president, wanted to fix the problem with suspensions. Steffi, however, rightly and astutely
pointed out that that would still be hurting the tournaments, nor would it stop players from playing exhibitions held against tournaments while suspended; her solution was to add more zeroes to the fine, which had been at a ridiculously low level. I wonder why Navratilova, Evert, and Shriver never raised the fine before this -- oh, maybe it was because they played exhibitions held against tournaments all the time. In fact, I don't think there was even a rule against it until 1987 or 1988 (coincidence?). Oh, but it wasn't a "problem" when Navratilova, Evert, and Shriver did it in previous years. The hypocrisy is stunning.
Or what about in 1994, when IMG tried to take over the WTA? And guess whose side Billie Jean King was on. Hint: it wasn't the WTA's. That's right, BJK was all for enslaving her own "creation" to IMG. Once again, while Steffi wasn't on the players council, she was standing right behind them as the biggest (and maybe only) reason they could say "No!" and mean it.
That the WTA's independence survived was thanks to Steffi never thinking, "Eh, IMG will fill my pockets even better than the current system. Let's do it." She could have sold out so many times, but never did.
And don't get me started on the whole drug testing issue. It's almost like a running joke. Steffi would say "We're not doing enough." A year later they would make a little better effort. Then the press would ask Steffi if it had gotten better. Steffi would say "Yes, but we still aren't doing this." And then the cycle would repeat.
And do the IMG/WTA Sorority Sisters really want Ms. Anthropic to recite many of the stupid, self-serving, and/or catastrophic decisions they made in their tenures? Shall we start at the beginning? A cigarette company as a sponsor? Really? Ever heard of the phrase "deal with the devil"? What about Pam "Sure, let's let Kraft out of their sponsorship contract early even though we don't have another sponsor lined up yet" Shriver? There's a lot of information, not just old newspaper articles, that could be "liberated" that would be very embarrassing for certain people.
And in a few days, I will post two articles from Wimbledon 1988 that will perhaps educate many of the young'uns about just how important "leading on the court" was back then.