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grudpill
Mar 23rd, 2009, 12:40 PM
Indian Wells was a grim look into the future of Women's tennis when the Williams sisters are gone, and it looks ugly. When you get a middle management player like Vera winning a big title against a streaky headcase like Ana Ivanovic, then you know the tour is in trouble.

For me, there are really only 3 genuine stars on the WTA. Venus, Serena and Maria Sharapova. With Maria out with injuries (and her injuries may be bad enough to cause early retirement), Venus and Serena have provided much needed championship consistency to the tour by winning most of the big titles between them since Wimbledon 08.

Venus and Serena should not still be carrying the tour at their ages. Where on earth are the new stars. The genuine "great" players of the future. Unless they arrive soon, we'll never know how good these future Grand Slam winners really are, or whether they are just above average players winning slams because there are no truly great players around to challenge them (like Williams, Henin, Davenport, Sharapova ect).

I don't want to live in a world where the likes of Dinara Safina, Vera Zvonereva and a bunch of other faceless Russians who wouldn't have a hope in slam finals against The Williameses or Henin in their prime, are multiple grand slam winners. That's the situation we are facing. Without the Williams sisters, a player like Zvonereva might end up a hall of famer.

The new generation has been a huge disappointment, imho.

Ellery
Mar 23rd, 2009, 12:40 PM
No :)

grudpill
Mar 23rd, 2009, 12:46 PM
I think it is. I've been visting some of the other tennis sites and forums (like TT warehouse, espn and tennis.com) and it seems a large consensus regarding the WTA at Indian Wells was "who cares about this tournament if neither of the Williameses are playing". People think they make the rest of the womens tour look like hacks.

Unlike the ATP, where people get excited about the "big four" (Nadal, Federer, Muarry, Djokovic) and to a lesser extent, Roddick.

Maria Sharapova being healthy would take some pressure off the Williamses to have to be at every big tournament, but I can't see that happening.

court70
Mar 23rd, 2009, 12:49 PM
I don't know what you are talking about but Vera is a very good player as a matter of fact, she's better than JJ and Ana, she just needs to keep her head together.

Wojtek
Mar 23rd, 2009, 12:51 PM
Wozniacki and Azarenka will be better and better. When Serena and Venus reitre we will have Michelle de Britto and Laura Robson.

madmax
Mar 23rd, 2009, 12:55 PM
all this doomy and gloomy atmosphere will be gone when Sharapova will return to kick some asses. Without her and Willimas sistas all the other players are like faceless boring UE machines. Matches are not won but rather lost thanks to choking and talentless players like Jankovic are able to accumulate enough points to become Nr.1...sad

grudpill
Mar 23rd, 2009, 12:55 PM
I don't know what you are talking about but Vera is a very good player as a matter of fact, she's better than JJ and Ana, she just needs to keep her head together.

Tennis is a mental game as well. And Vera is a mental midget (at least she's toned down the crying). Whether she has better/sounder strokes than JJ or Ana is debatable. But she's mentally weaker than both of them, which is why she she'll never achieve as much as them.

And considering that neither Ana or JJ are exactly paragons of mental strength, that's a daming indictment on Vera. She makes Ana look as mentally tough as Rafael Nadal.

Costanza
Mar 23rd, 2009, 12:56 PM
I don't know what you are talking about but Vera is a very good player as a matter of fact, she's better than JJ and Ana, she just needs to keep her head together.

:spit::haha:

BlameSerena
Mar 23rd, 2009, 12:59 PM
Yes. For me, anyway. I was too bored this week to watch any matches but the final. I guess I'm more a fan of Serena than of tennis, so yeah, in my case, tennis will be screwed once she is gone. Although I'd probably watch the slams as a casual viewer.

Wojtek
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:02 PM
I don't know what you are talking about but Vera is a very good player as a matter of fact, she's better than JJ and Ana, she just needs to keep her head together.

Yes and she has one tier one win (shitty IW) and amazing 1/2 ay AO when she playaed against one top ten player and lost :lol:

sammy01
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:07 PM
its screwed right now, the williams sisters retiring would just be the final nail in the coffin.

Dave.
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:10 PM
Big Fat No.

Golovinjured.
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:12 PM
No, because Clijsters will come back before than, and Sharapova, Dokic and Golovin will eventually be back in the TOP 10. Dementieva will also win a slam, as will Hantuchova.

Renalicious
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:15 PM
Obviously.

bobbynorwich
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:17 PM
What a silly question. :yawn:

vwfan
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:22 PM
pretty much.

no great talents in the immediate pipeline and certainly none with STAR quality. hopefully, Venus and Serena can stay competitive for a few more years and then some talents will emerge.

Who would have thunk Murray???!!!

HRHoliviasmith
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:27 PM
I think it is. I've been visting some of the other tennis sites and forums (like TT warehouse, espn and tennis.com) and it seems a large consensus regarding the WTA at Indian Wells was "who cares about this tournament if neither of the Williameses are playing". People think they make the rest of the womens tour look like hacks.

Unlike the ATP, where people get excited about the "big four" (Nadal, Federer, Muarry, Djokovic) and to a lesser extent, Roddick.

Maria Sharapova being healthy would take some pressure off the Williamses to have to be at every big tournament, but I can't see that happening.

are you kidding? they HATE them here. the derogatory crap they say here is lame compared to some of the nonsense I've seen on that board.

TheBoiledEgg
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:29 PM
was tennis dead when Evert retired, then Navratilova ?
you cant have new stars without old ones going away.
few yrs ago the same was said about Henin being a no-one

HRHoliviasmith
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:34 PM
and no the sport will not be screwed after V & S retire :bigcry:. they will be sorely missed though but WTA will adjust and move on much like it's done in the past.

grudpill
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:37 PM
are you kidding? they HATE them here. the derogatory crap they say here is lame compared to some of the nonsense I've seen on that board.

I know they hate the WS sisters. But truthfully, they hate womens tennis as well. As much as they usually hate to admit it, the know the WS are the standard bearers of the womens tour, so on the few occassions neither Serena or Venus play, you do see quite a few TT warehouse posters (who would usually diss Venus or Serena if they were actually playing)acknowledge that the women's tour is even weaker when WS aren't playing. When the WS aren't playing, it just gives them an even bigger excuse to bash the lack of quality in the womens game.

That site is populated by a bunch of mysoginistic sociopaths. Don't know why I gave them as an example of another forums opinion mattering:lol:

grudpill
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:48 PM
was tennis dead when Evert retired, then Navratilova ?
you cant have new stars without old ones going away.
few yrs ago the same was said about Henin being a no-one

I know what you're saying, but usually, there is a generational overlap, where you can actually see the new "great" champions emerging, just as the old champions are departing. Graf began to peak just as Evert and Navralitova began their relative declines. Then Seles came along to challenge Graf. As that era, declined, Hingis and Davenport began to peak. Then the Williams Sisters, Henin, Clijsters ect.

I'm not seeing that overlap now. To me, the likes of Dinara Safina and Vera Zvonerava are not the new "greats" poised to take over from the declining ones.

I guess people are talking up the likes of Laura Robson as future standard bearers....but she's a 14 year old junior.... there should be players already established in the senior ranks capable of taking on the standard set by the WS or Henin.

fifiricci
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:54 PM
pretty much.

no great talents in the immediate pipeline and certainly none with STAR quality. hopefully, Venus and Serena can stay competitive for a few more years and then some talents will emerge.

Who would have thunk Murray???!!!

What hubris. And, even worse, what shocking grammar. "Thunk"?!!!!

HRHoliviasmith
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:54 PM
Venus can retire tomorrow and no one will even notice

Serena will leave a huge emptiness

I know I shouldn't but this cracked me the hell up...sorry :haha: :haha:

grudpill
Mar 23rd, 2009, 01:58 PM
Venus can retire tomorrow and no one will even notice



Yes, no one will notice that one of the greatest grass court players in the history of the game, and a 5 time Wimbledon champion, has retired:rolleyes:

spartanfan
Mar 23rd, 2009, 02:17 PM
In a word Yes. If Venus and Serena retired today the tour would be F*@ked! Aside from Sharapova there are no other stars on tour. Sure there are some fine players, but none have personality or wide outside tennis appeal. But to me even Maria's appeal is manufactured and forced, akin to an American Idol winner. Without the WS women's tennis in the US would be dead, and there are no players on the horizon to replace them. There are some fine Russian players, but none really stand out, aside from Maria, but who even knows how she will do when and if she returns. I can't find one compelling reason to care about any of the Russians. To me they have no real personality, nor an exceptional game. If Maria comes back and can't win anything big, the world won't care about her any more, and I think that's a real big possibility. The Serbs are a little better, it helps that Ana is absolutely beautiful, and JJ can actually compete with the top players. But there is no real controversey or dynamic matchups at the moment.

LDVTennis
Mar 23rd, 2009, 02:51 PM
I know they hate the WS sisters. But truthfully, they hate womens tennis as well. As much as they usually hate to admit it, the know the WS are the standard bearers of the womens tour, so on the few occassions neither Serena or Venus play, you do see quite a few TT warehouse posters (who would usually diss Venus or Serena if they were actually playing)acknowledge that the women's tour is even weaker when WS aren't playing. When the WS aren't playing, it just gives them an even bigger excuse to bash the lack of quality in the womens game.

That site is populated by a bunch of mysoginistic sociopaths. Don't know why I gave them as an example of another forums opinion mattering:lol:

The posters on that particular board have a much higher tennis IQ. If they don't like any particular tennis player, it probably has something to do with technique, strategy, fitness level, and/or racquet technology. There's currently a thread over there about Nadal and his racquet technology. You'd never see a thread like that over here if the subject were Serena and her racquet technology.

hdfb
Mar 23rd, 2009, 03:01 PM
For me it's just hard to imagine and stomach down potential slam winners when the Williams sisters retire. I hope Ana can regroup, as much as my liking for her has waned.

thegreendestiny
Mar 23rd, 2009, 03:12 PM
:yawn:

Caillou
Mar 23rd, 2009, 03:22 PM
Venus can retire tomorrow and no one will even notice

Serena will leave a huge emptiness

you could also leave this message board, and whether we noticed or not, im sure we would appreciate it with comments like those.

brabbit
Mar 23rd, 2009, 03:28 PM
Hopefully when they do retire, they will then start to have little Venus and Serena babies!!!

2Black
Mar 23rd, 2009, 03:34 PM
Maybe not tennis because there is always another player around the corner BUT American tennis will be unless a new player pops up quick

pov
Mar 23rd, 2009, 03:37 PM
Although I'm a fan of Venus Williams, IW was a great tournament even without the Williams sisters. And even though both sisters are great players, women's tennis will be just fine when they retire, just as it was fine before they came along.

miffedmax
Mar 23rd, 2009, 03:58 PM
I think as far as the US, yes, for at least until another great American player emerges. For the rest of the world? Probably not so much.

Their retirement will actually make it easier for a Masha, a Vika, an Ana or a player to be named later to put together some impressive runs and emerge as a legitimate standard bearer of the sport.

American audiences will want to see an American contender before they'll come back. Same on the men's side, really. The audience is out there. Lots of Americans play the sport. But we don't tune in and watch or show up for matches unless we can watch an American play (generally speaking).

olympus28
Mar 23rd, 2009, 04:44 PM
of course

RenaSlam.
Mar 23rd, 2009, 05:07 PM
I won't be watching once Venus and Serena stop playing.

They keep me interested enough in the WTA, but when they are gone I'll only follow the ATP.

mirzalover
Mar 23rd, 2009, 05:10 PM
Probably

debopero
Mar 23rd, 2009, 05:11 PM
I couldn't tell you because I can't imagine that. :tears:

Galsen
Mar 23rd, 2009, 05:12 PM
Venus can retire tomorrow and no one will even notice

Serena will leave a huge emptiness

:eek::eek::eek::help:

50Sense
Mar 23rd, 2009, 05:18 PM
The WTA will be without two of its greatest villains (especially Serena) ever. That’s for sure :lol:.

People will probably find a reason to hate on them after they retire, anyway.

Le Chat
Mar 23rd, 2009, 05:24 PM
I cant imagine this day ...it will be a very sad day for woman tennis , whatever you like them or not ...and i dont know why i have feeling that they will retire the same day ..

And to me just image that ...my stomach already hurts me ..

Kart
Mar 23rd, 2009, 05:29 PM
The problem in the last two weeks has been that Williams sisters' absence has gotten as much attention as the whole tournament and for all the wrong reasons.

It has been used as an opportunity to attack the quality of play (which really has been no better or worse than at any other tournament) instead of what it really is which is a protest of previous treatment that still hurts them.

You cannot sell the whole tour on the basis of two players - that is really what is screwing the tour at the moment.

If Ivanovic, Jankovic, Dementieva, Kuznetsova etc were not constantly defined as the best of the rest and promoted as the stars they could be then they would rise up to the task and develop some compelling rivalries.

Yes the overall quality would be worse to start with but it would improve as players' confidence improved.

CJ07
Mar 23rd, 2009, 05:45 PM
I think the problem is that the "next generation" is extremely dissapointing relative to past years. As someone said earlier, as Evert and Navratilova were declining, Graf - the best player ever - was starting to peak. Then, Seles (who many thought would be the best ever) started to peak. Then you had a period that is sort of similar to know where it was Graf + the rest. Hingis then came around with a completely different game, then followed up by the emergence of the Williams sisters, Kournikova (who at the time people thought would be a multiple GS champion), etc.

We just don't have comparable talent. Jankovic, Ivanovic, etc. just aren't nearly as good as those who came before them. However, its not their fault.

I'm assuming that 2010-2013 or so will be similar to 1993-1996, just without a Graf. Hopefully by that point someone will come along.

The question is will anyone still be around to see it.

crazillo
Mar 23rd, 2009, 05:46 PM
It depends on who is able to follow them. We still have some years left, but if they were retiring now it would leave a HUGE gap on the tour.

MaBaker
Mar 23rd, 2009, 05:48 PM
Not just womens tennis, but mens as well.

Galsen
Mar 23rd, 2009, 05:54 PM
Not just womens tennis, but mens as well.

:lol::lol::lol::lol:

pav
Mar 23rd, 2009, 05:58 PM
It is a silly question,great players they are but the WTA will carry on without even a palpitation, no player is bigger than the game. It is exactly the same as when your best pig dog gets a rip from a boar and you think "What the hell am I gonna do now?" but there is always a young dog that steps up and within a short time old whathisname is just a pleasant memory. I for example only pay attention to Serena playing if I am interested in her opponent, and I'm possibly not the lone ranger in this! Great players yes,but certainly will be no toxic shock when they pull the pin!

bobbynorwich
Mar 23rd, 2009, 06:24 PM
Womens tennis will be just fine. :D Just look at Indian Wells which has the highest attendance in the world of any tennis tournament outside the Grand Slams, a feat accomplished without either Williams sister.

Time for all the Williams fans to develop attachments to some new up-and-comers as a way to prepare for the eventual retirements of the sisters. Just remember, there's bundles of talent on the womens tour besides V. and S.

AnnaK_4ever
Mar 23rd, 2009, 06:33 PM
Womens tennis will be just fine. :D Just look at Indian Wells which has the highest attendance in the world of any tennis tournament outside the Grand Slams, a feat accomplished without either Williams sister.

Roddick, Federer and Nadal all played at Indian Wells.

Le Chat
Mar 23rd, 2009, 06:35 PM
Womens tennis will be just fine. :D Just look at Indian Wells which has the highest attendance in the world of any tennis tournament outside the Grand Slams, a feat accomplished without either Williams sister.

Time for all the Williams fans to develop attachments to some new up-and-comers as a way to prepare for the eventual retirements of the sisters. Just remember, there's bundles of talent on the womens tour besides V. and S.


The attendance for IW was thanks to the men ,sorry , i know thruth hurts ...:shrug:

But hey... if the new generation you are talking about is as charismatic and killer instinc as the WS are ...then why not ? , if not then i will do like everybody , leave the stadium when women are playing:lol: and ..turn towards the mens .. :shrug:

grudpill
Mar 23rd, 2009, 06:37 PM
You cannot sell the whole tour on the basis of two players - that is really what is screwing the tour at the moment.

If Ivanovic, Jankovic, Dementieva, Kuznetsova etc were not constantly defined as the best of the rest and promoted as the stars they could be then they would rise up to the task and develop some compelling rivalries.

Yes the overall quality would be worse to start with but it would improve as players' confidence improved.

I have to disagree with this. Last year, Larry Scott did his best to sell Ana Ivanovic as the "great new star". Seriously, Ivanovic got promoted close to the same levels as Maria Sharapova, before and after she won the French. When you walk into your local Borders bookshop, and you can see Ana Ivanovic on the cover of FHM in a bikini, you know she's getting serious "star" promotion outside the tennis establishment.

Ana simply couldn't live up to the hype as a player. After the French, she basically crumbled and started getting beaten easily in tournaments. The hoped for Sharapova/Ivanovic rivalry came to nothing.

Jankovic has gotten major "star" promotion as well. Both Ana and Jelena were the big star opponents for the Williams Sisters at the Bille Jean King exhibition. And they got equal billing to the sisters. As with Ivanovic, Jelena is a case of not being able to live up to the hype. A no.1 who couldn't win a grand slam, she was not looked at as someone realistically good enough to challenge the WS at grand slam level.

The tennis going public aren't idiots. They know Jelana and Ana aren't "greats", no matter how many glossy advertising campaigns and exhibition tournaments Larry Scott tries to sell them with. You can't sell the Dementieva as a "great" to the public when she's been a bridesmaid almost all her career at major tournies (till the Olympics) and will probably never win a slam. Even though the WTA has tried to sell Jankovic and Ivanovic as "stars" on par with the Williams sisters, the public sees through it, and knows that they are "the best of the rest".

The tour is sold on the Sisters (and Maria) because they are the only multiple grand slam winners and proven champions on it. And it was only feasible to promote Maria as a "great" to the tennis public, because she beat a Williams sister (Serena) to win the most prestigious Grand Slam in the calender, Wimbledon.

Temperenka
Mar 23rd, 2009, 06:41 PM
Yes. If all tournaments would look like this Indian Wells, I would stop watching women's tennis forever.

Marionated
Mar 23rd, 2009, 06:49 PM
I don't know. Is everyone match that doesn't involve a sister that bad?

BlameSerena
Mar 23rd, 2009, 06:51 PM
I don't know. Is everyone match that doesn't involve a sister that bad?

Well I've watched one match since the BJK cup and the answer is YES. :lol:

Seriously though, the sport will live on forever.

Not for me. There will be no one for me to be fanatical about or no one really chasing greatness to make me want to watch beyond slam finals.

BlameSerena
Mar 23rd, 2009, 06:55 PM
They are as guilty as the rest of tour for screeching, error-fest boreathon's.

Serena doesn't grunt nearly as much as I want her to. :)

Helen Lawson
Mar 23rd, 2009, 07:03 PM
Most of the hardcore tennis types I know stopped watching tennis after Steffi retired. I got a couple to watch the Justine/Mary French final, and the Venus/Lindsay Pilot Pen final from ages ago when where was like 9 consecutive breaks of serve, not a lot to make the hardcore ones find interest again in these matches, sadly.

I think tennis interest in the US has been decreasing slowly since before Williams X2, and Williams are not universally liked by Americans for several reasons which are well-known to most of us, so they have mitigated the decrease, but not by a huge amount. Interest is moving to Asia and Middle East where they like the sport, it's new for them, and lots of money for sponsorships. They like their stars, but absense of the the Williams won't be a big deal, at least now. Interest in tennis in the US will go down at a much faster rate after they retire, though, there are no decent Americans who play, let alone ones with star quality.

Le Chat
Mar 23rd, 2009, 07:20 PM
Most of the hardcore tennis types I know stopped watching tennis after Steffi retired. I got a couple to watch the Justine/Mary French final, and the Venus/Lindsay Pilot Pen final from ages ago when where was like 9 consecutive breaks of serve, not a lot to make the hardcore ones find interest again in these matches, sadly.

I think tennis interest in the US has been decreasing slowly since before Williams X2, and Williams are not universally liked by Americans for several reasons which are well-known to most of us, so they have mitigated the decrease, but not by a huge amount. Interest is moving to Asia and Middle East where they like the sport, it's new for them, and lots of money for sponsorships. They like their stars, but absense of the the Williams won't be a big deal, at least now. Interest in tennis in the US will go down at a much faster rate after they retire, though, there are no decent Americans who play, let alone ones with star quality.


The WS have a lot of fans outside the US trust me ... i am from France and know full of hardcore fans here . They even proposed to go to RG with banners and cheer for the WS like groupies in the Rock stars concerts ...

The interest in tennis will decrease dramaticaly in The US but also in the reste of world mainly Europe and Africa (i mean for people who like tennis ) .

DA FOREHAND
Mar 23rd, 2009, 07:31 PM
I think as far as the US, yes, for at least until another great American player emerges. For the rest of the world? Probably not so much.

Their retirement will actually make it easier for a Masha, a Vika, an Ana or a player to be named later to put together some impressive runs and emerge as a legitimate standard bearer of the sport.

American audiences will want to see an American contender before they'll come back. Same on the men's side, really. The audience is out there. Lots of Americans play the sport. But we don't tune in and watch or show up for matches unless we can watch an American play (generally speaking).
i thought the test was to overcome the greats of the previous generation?

Sammm
Mar 23rd, 2009, 07:39 PM
Don't worry guys :bigwave:

A meteor or nuclear weapons will probably - hopefully - kill us before we have to live in a tennis world without Venus and Serena. Because life wouldn't be worth living without them.

Seriously. I love Venus and have massive respect for Serena, but tennis is bigger than both of them. It's bigger than the individuals it has. New players always come along, and they will do again. But the amount of threads about the downfall of women's tennis is getting riduculous. Steffica Greles has posioned our minds :devil:
So let's try to enjoy women's tennis, and worry about something a little more important (global warming, poverty etc.)

Tennis Fool
Mar 23rd, 2009, 07:45 PM
I know what you're saying, but usually, there is a generational overlap, where you can actually see the new "great" champions emerging, just as the old champions are departing. Graf began to peak just as Evert and Navralitova began their relative declines. Then Seles came along to challenge Graf. As that era, declined, Hingis and Davenport began to peak. Then the Williams Sisters, Henin, Clijsters ect.

I'm not seeing that overlap now. To me, the likes of Dinara Safina and Vera Zvonerava are not the new "greats" poised to take over from the declining ones.

I guess people are talking up the likes of Laura Robson as future standard bearers....but she's a 14 year old junior.... there should be players already established in the senior ranks capable of taking on the standard set by the WS or Henin.
Not always true. I remember in 1995, all the talk was about the "lack of depth in women's tennis" due to Seles and Capriati out, Pierce being in and out, and Graf just having to show up to win. The same thing was said, who's on the horizon?

In 2003, when the Williams sisters were injured/not playing, people were saying, women's tennis is dead. Who cares about all-Belgian finals? Now, everyone is talking about missing Clijsters and Henin when they were considered "boring" and "non-stars".

In fact, it seems this complaint arises every other year. If this were a more particular complaint about American tennis, then I would understand better.

DA FOREHAND
Mar 23rd, 2009, 07:46 PM
unless some interesting mentally sound players emerge i will watch more atp tennis

LDVTennis
Mar 23rd, 2009, 07:48 PM
The WS have a lot of fans outside the US trust me ... i am from France and know full of hardcore fans here . They even proposed to go to RG with banners and cheer for the WS like groupies in the Rock stars concerts ...

The interest in tennis will decrease dramaticaly in The US but also in the reste of world mainly Europe and Africa (i mean for people who like tennis ) .

I thought that by "hardcore" Helen meant a tennis fan who does all or some of the following:

(1) plays tennis at least once a week
(2) has taken tennis lessons at a club or from some pro
(3) purchases one or two tennis racquets a year; has his or her racquets restrung more than once a year
(4) has seen his or her favorite player in person more than once
(5) is a member of the USTA because of the discounts one gets at certain events
(6) takes a vacation to play tennis
(7) has visited the Tennis HOF at least once
(8) buys season tickets for one or more events and consequently learned long ago how to get the best tickets by going through his or her club, through one of the top tennis brokers (e.g., Steve Furgal), or in the old days through one's car dealer (e.g., Mercedes)...

Maybe, Helen can tell us what she means. In any case, that's what a "hardcore fan" means to me.

DeliriousPotato
Mar 23rd, 2009, 07:49 PM
I love ball-bashing, when Venus blasts a winner I just feel like fighting with someone :fiery:
You know you LOVE power, people-who-think-tennis-is-all-about-the-touch :lol:

BlameSerena
Mar 23rd, 2009, 07:51 PM
I thought that by "hardcore" Helen meant a tennis fan who does all or some of the following:

(1) plays tennis at least once a week
(2) has taken tennis lessons at a club or from some pro
(3) purchases one or two tennis racquets a year; has his or her racquets restrung more than once a year
(4) has seen his or her favorite player in person more than once
(5) is a member of the USTA because of the discounts one gets at certain events
(6) takes a vacation to play tennis
(7) has visited the Tennis HOF at least once
(8) buys season tickets for one or more events and consequently learned long ago how to get the best tickets by going through his or her club, through one of the top tennis brokers (e.g., Steve Furgal), or in the old days through one's car dealer (e.g., Mercedes)...

Maybe, Helen can tell us what she means. In any case, that's what a "hardcore fan" means to me.
If this is what Helen meant, the appeal of a sport needs to go beyond its "hardcore" fans and find space in the living rooms of casual sports fans in order to gain mass appeal. The WS are able to do that.

DeliriousPotato
Mar 23rd, 2009, 07:55 PM
The WS have a lot of fans outside the US trust me ... i am from France and know full of hardcore fans here . They even proposed to go to RG with banners and cheer for the WS like groupies in the Rock stars concerts ...

The interest in tennis will decrease dramaticaly in The US but also in the reste of world mainly Europe and Africa (i mean for people who like tennis ) .

You shouldn't generalize Europe so much....
Here in Portugal, tennis has seen a meteoric rise in terms of people playing it and general interrest. Spain is an immortal tennis power. And of course everybody noticed the propagation of tennis in Eastern Europe.

In fact, If tennis wasn't getting more and more popular, than the prize money of the tournaments wouldn't be increasing every year as it is now.

Le Chat
Mar 23rd, 2009, 08:26 PM
I thought that by "hardcore" Helen meant a tennis fan who does all or some of the following:

(1) plays tennis at least once a week
(2) has taken tennis lessons at a club or from some pro
(3) purchases one or two tennis racquets a year; has his or her racquets restrung more than once a year
(4) has seen his or her favorite player in person more than once
(5) is a member of the USTA because of the discounts one gets at certain events
(6) takes a vacation to play tennis
(7) has visited the Tennis HOF at least once
(8) buys season tickets for one or more events and consequently learned long ago how to get the best tickets by going through his or her club, through one of the top tennis brokers (e.g., Steve Furgal), or in the old days through one's car dealer (e.g., Mercedes)...

Maybe, Helen can tell us what she means. In any case, that's what a "hardcore fan" means to me.


I dont know what helen meant by "hardcore" fans ..but to me its not necessary to play the game .

I dont play tennis at all ,and may dont know all about the "technical" side of a tennis racket , but i consider myself as a hardcore fan .



I think if it wasnt the case , i wouldnt have bothered to get up at 3 oclockin the morning and pass all the night (here in France ) watching the US open or AO .

I wouldnt have bothered to lie to my boss and skipp a part of my job (i remember ) to watch the semis 2003 RG ... (and accesory cry cause of the results ..) .

i wouldnt have bothered to waste 20% of my miserable sholarship to take a subcription for Eurosport , Eurosport Player , Sport+ and Canal+ (and Canal+ especialy for Wimbledon as its the only french channel which broadcast the tournament )

I wouldnt have bothered to spend a part of my miserable scholarship to go and see the Bercy and Coubertin tournaments last year ...

If i was not a "hardcore" fan i wouldnt have made my 5 sisters who didnt understand "at all" my love for this "annoying" sport becoming tennis fans also and knowing all about the tennis game and the results mens and women ...



Lot of people dont practice the sport they would have dreamt to practice for several reasons , one of them and i think the most important is ...the money , and i belong to those people .

Besides , i was born in a culture where only soccer or athletism are considered as amazing sports and adults here (in my culture ) dont learn young people to find out ather sports than the cheapest and most spectacular ones like athletism (for women) and soccer (for men) . When i was younger the only sports i had some ablities was Athletism but NO passion unfortunately.

If i had discovered the tennis game at this age i would forced my father to put me in a tennis club , even i think he would have found it strange and too expensive ... Finaly i found out this sport in an age i couldnt become a champion anymore ..



Yes if i was not a hardcore fan i wouldnt have bothered to do all these things and more ..same for the other hardcore fans i know and dont play .

DA FOREHAND
Mar 23rd, 2009, 08:46 PM
I dont know what helen meant by "hardcore" fans ..but to me its not necessary to play the game .

I dont play tennis at all ,and may dont know all about the "technical" side of a tennis racket , but i consider myself as a hardcore fan .



I think if it wasnt the case , i wouldnt have bothered to get up at 3 oclockin the morning and pass all the night (here in France ) watching the US open or AO .

I wouldnt have bothered to lie to my boss and skipp a part of my job (i remember ) to watch the semis 2003 RG ... (and accesory cry cause of the results ..) .

i wouldnt have bothered to waste 20% of my miserable sholarship to take a subcription for Eurosport , Eurosport Player , Sport+ and Canal+ (and Canal+ especialy for Wimbledon as its the only french channel which broadcast the tournament )

I wouldnt have bothered to spend a part of my miserable scholarship to go and see the Bercy and Coubertin tournaments last year ...

If i was not a "hardcore" fan i wouldnt have made my 5 sisters who didnt understand "at all" my love for this "annoying" sport becoming tennis fans also and knowing all about the tennis game and the results mens and women ...



Lot of people dont practice the sport they would have dreamt to practice for several reasons , one of them and i think the most important is ...the money , and i belong to those people besides i found out this sport in an age i couldnt become a champion anymore ..



Yes if i was not a hardcore fan i wouldnt have bothered to do all these things and more ..same for the other hardcore fans i know and dont play .


don't put too much stock into what ldtv says, he's trying to sound like an elitist to hide the fact that he comes from humble means.

fifiricci
Mar 23rd, 2009, 08:52 PM
I think as far as the US, yes, for at least until another great American player emerges. For the rest of the world? Probably not so much.

Their retirement will actually make it easier for a Masha, a Vika, an Ana or a player to be named later to put together some impressive runs and emerge as a legitimate standard bearer of the sport.

American audiences will want to see an American contender before they'll come back. Same on the men's side, really. The audience is out there. Lots of Americans play the sport. But we don't tune in and watch or show up for matches unless we can watch an American play (generally speaking).

I agree with this sad fact, except that maybe tennis is not screwed at all without the WS as far as the rest of the world is concerned (although they are of course great players and they'll be missed for while after they're gone).
Many of us in the UK manage to get and maintain an intense interest in tennis (mens' and womens') without there having to be a sniff of a succesful British player anywhere on the horizon (which is just as well :D). Our interest is generated purely by a love of the sport itself. It seems to be a basic truth that Americans are only interested in anything that has lots of Americans in it and just can't be bothered otherwise. American interest in or concern about anything seems to be fuelled soely by patriotism or self interest. In the UK we don't do patriotism to anything like the same extent and will therefore happily watch tennis or any other sport purely because we've decided we like it. I've been a huge fan of tennis for about 30 years and have quite happily sworn allegiance to a whole succession of foreign players. I care not a jot that they weren't British. And I can't stand Tiny Tim Henman :help:

AndrewMarshall
Mar 23rd, 2009, 08:53 PM
If you don't like womens tennis don't watch it. It's your choice. Personally I think it's interesting when you don't know who's going to win.

AndrewMarshall
Mar 23rd, 2009, 08:54 PM
If you don't like womens tennis don't watch it. It's your choice. Personally I think it's interesting when you don't know who's going to win.

It's much better now than when we knew steffi graf was goint to win every tournament she played.

RFSTB
Mar 23rd, 2009, 09:20 PM
I never used to pay much attention to women's tennis until the Williams sisters came along. They turned me from a casual fan into a big tennis fan. I think tennis without WS will be like Basketball without Michael Jordan, Figure Skating without Michelle Kwan, Golf without Tiger Woods, Men's Tennis without Federer. Any competition that did not include these stars simply did not feel legitimate or consequential. IMO these are once in a generation transcendent superstars who can pull in casual fans. Once they leave the sport, the casual fans leave with them, and only a much smaller core of die-hard fans stick around. These are the true fans of the sport, they'll watch no matter who's around.

Sure the game will always go on, and new people will come along, but it'll never be the same again. Ratings for the NBA dropped 50% after MJ retired, and still hasn't gone back to the same level. Skating(heck, make that Winter Olympics) has pretty much fallen off everyone's radar screen since Michelle Kwan retired. Golf ratings took a dive last year when Tiger Woods took time off after knee surgery. Even if you are not a fan of these stars, you have to acknowledge their impact on the sport. Thankfully for tennis, WS plan to be around for at least 3-4 more years. I'm going to enjoy it while it lasts.

Lulu.
Mar 23rd, 2009, 09:21 PM
Pretty much yeah. There will never be another player like Serena Williams.

Olórin
Mar 23rd, 2009, 09:52 PM
I thought that by "hardcore" Helen meant a tennis fan who does all or some of the following:

(1) plays tennis at least once a week
(2) has taken tennis lessons at a club or from some pro
(3) purchases one or two tennis racquets a year; has his or her racquets restrung more than once a year
(4) has seen his or her favorite player in person more than once
(5) is a member of the USTA because of the discounts one gets at certain events
(6) takes a vacation to play tennis
(7) has visited the Tennis HOF at least once
(8) buys season tickets for one or more events and consequently learned long ago how to get the best tickets by going through his or her club, through one of the top tennis brokers (e.g., Steve Furgal), or in the old days through one's car dealer (e.g., Mercedes)...

Maybe, Helen can tell us what she means. In any case, that's what a "hardcore fan" means to me.

So according to your definitions, a hardcore tennis fan can only be an american. As if further proof of your idiocy was needed.

You really are a complete fool I hope you realise, you make yourself look ridiculous on daily basis at the moment. It's quite sad.

*Jool*
Mar 23rd, 2009, 10:03 PM
No, because Clijsters will come back before than, and Sharapova, Dokic and Golovin will eventually be back in the TOP 10. Dementieva will also win a slam, as will Hantuchova.
we're screwed :sad:

Sammm
Mar 23rd, 2009, 10:07 PM
Pretty much yeah. There will never be another player like Serena Williams.


There will never be another Steffi Graf. There will never be another Martina Navratilova. And you're right:
there will never be another Serena Williams either. But there'll be someone different and exciting. I promise :hug:

Harvs
Mar 23rd, 2009, 10:09 PM
i would say if the williams sisters AND sharapova retired at this current state, yes the tour would be screwed for probably a few years... before some younger girls stepped it up.

the tour needs the big players who are universally known, in the past we have had big groups of these people (e.g. davenport, capriati, clijsters, henin etc) but now we only have these 3... so we need some new girls to really step it up and make the game mroe interesting to the non-obsessed people ha:)

canuckfan
Mar 23rd, 2009, 10:29 PM
I have to disagree with this. Last year, Larry Scott did his best to sell Ana Ivanovic as the "great new star". Seriously, Ivanovic got promoted close to the same levels as Maria Sharapova, before and after she won the French. When you walk into your local Borders bookshop, and you can see Ana Ivanovic on the cover of FHM in a bikini, you know she's getting serious "star" promotion outside the tennis establishment.

Ana simply couldn't live up to the hype as a player. After the French, she basically crumbled and started getting beaten easily in tournaments. The hoped for Sharapova/Ivanovic rivalry came to nothing.

Jankovic has gotten major "star" promotion as well. Both Ana and Jelena were the big star opponents for the Williams Sisters at the Bille Jean King exhibition. And they got equal billing to the sisters. As with Ivanovic, Jelena is a case of not being able to live up to the hype. A no.1 who couldn't win a grand slam, she was not looked at as someone realistically good enough to challenge the WS at grand slam level.

The tennis going public aren't idiots. They know Jelana and Ana aren't "greats", no matter how many glossy advertising campaigns and exhibition tournaments Larry Scott tries to sell them with. You can't sell the Dementieva as a "great" to the public when she's been a bridesmaid almost all her career at major tournies (till the Olympics) and will probably never win a slam. Even though the WTA has tried to sell Jankovic and Ivanovic as "stars" on par with the Williams sisters, the public sees through it, and knows that they are "the best of the rest".

The tour is sold on the Sisters (and Maria) because they are the only multiple grand slam winners and proven champions on it. And it was only feasible to promote Maria as a "great" to the tennis public, because she beat a Williams sister (Serena) to win the most prestigious Grand Slam in the calender, Wimbledon.

Actually yes they are. Do you really think casual fans, who probably buy the most tickets, really keep track of how many slams have been won by each players? Or how much prize money they have won. No way! Put "Slam champion" before Ana Ivanovic name or "Olympic champion" before Dementieva's and it's fine for most. I really doubt they think Dementieva isn't worth their attention because she's slamless.

Tennis tournament exist because of the casual crowd, not because of the hardcore fans. Sure the Williams are a big draw, especially in the US, because of all they've won. But the general public doesn't have any idea exactly what they've won. A lot of people couldn't even tell them appart.

Once they retire, the stars will be the ones who win slams and fight for #1. It won't matter if they have personallity or not. If it was so important Jankovic would be a lot bigger than Venus, who is not the most exciting person, personality wise. Their slam wins won't be less important because the Williams have retired. Nobody says Venus' Wimbledon titles are worthless because Navratilova wasn't in the draw.

Sure women tennis will probably struggle in the US because there won't be any american top players, but it will continue to thrive in eastern europe and asia.

CoolDude7
Mar 23rd, 2009, 10:36 PM
of course WTA will die when they retire. The ATP will still be going strong with Nadal, Fed, and crew.

there will still be a wta, but it won't be like it used to be WITH THE two best players of a generation gone..

Volcana
Mar 23rd, 2009, 11:18 PM
Lulls happen. When Chris Evert retired, the tour, really took a step back. More than 'a step'. Navratilova and Graf were active and winning slams, but the general public never warmed to either of them. Seles brought women's tennis back some of the way to Chrissie America levels, but then she got stabbed. Kournikova really brought it back, and the Williams sisters drove things in 2000-2002 to where people thought of women's tennis as a 'growth' sport.

And then the wheels fell off. Somebody posted a list of all the slam winners who retired in 2005 or later. Henin, Davenport, Clijsters, Myskina, Pierce, Capriati; that's a lot of players who the general public had had time to get to know, either because they were around a long time (Pierce made the RG final in 1994 and 2005. Capriati had been on tour more than half her life when she stopped playing. You can't get rid of that many players people know and expect fan interest to hold.

But five years from now, people will know the current players better, and the next super-athlete will likely show up.

NOTE on Capriati - Think about her when you think you 'know' what's going to happen in someone's career. She won the '92 Olympics at sixteen, beating Graf and ASV in the process. Then it was almost NINE years before she won a slam. And that was with no Seles in her way.

Golovinjured.
Mar 23rd, 2009, 11:24 PM
Seriously, I think it will get worse before it gets better. Serena in particular will leave a huge gap, she is the star of the tour. Even I will miss her. The good side is, maybe without the Williams Sisters the tour might return to less brawn, more brain once again. It's not that important because unless either is injured, I can't see retirement for another 5 years atleast anyway.

bobbynorwich
Mar 23rd, 2009, 11:44 PM
The WTA is the most financially strong in its history.
http://www.canadianbusiness.com/managing/strategy/article.jsp?content=20090127_10004_10004

Looking at Singles Titles Won (below), clearly the WTA survived the retirements of its most successful players: Navratilova, Evert, Graf, King, Davenport, Seles, Henin, Hingis, and Clijsters. We're still having great tournaments even without these iconic players. And the Williams' retirement will be a much smaller deal than that of Martina, Chrissy, Steffie, or Lindsay.

Most Singles Titles Won (Open Era)
Player --------------------- No. Titles
1 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/cb/Flag_of_the_Czech_Republic.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_Czech_Republic.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Czech_Republic)/http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Martina Navratilova (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martina_Navratilova) 167
2 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Chris Evert (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chris_Evert) 157
3 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/ba/Flag_of_Germany.svg/22px-Flag_of_Germany.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Germany) Steffi Graf (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steffi_Graf) 107
4 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b9/Flag_of_Australia.svg/22px-Flag_of_Australia.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australia) Margaret Court (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Court) 92
5 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b9/Flag_of_Australia.svg/22px-Flag_of_Australia.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australia) Evonne Goolagong Cawley (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evonne_Goolagong_Cawley) 68
6 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Billie Jean King (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Billie_Jean_King) 67
7 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Lindsay Davenport (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lindsay_Davenport) 55
8 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/ae/Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Kingdom) Virginia Wade (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virginia_Wade) 55
9 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States)/http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/71/Flag_of_SFR_Yugoslavia.svg/22px-Flag_of_SFR_Yugoslavia.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yugoslavia)/http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f8/Flag_of_FR_Yugoslavia.svg/22px-Flag_of_FR_Yugoslavia.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_Republic_of_Yugoslavia) Monica Seles (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monica_Seles) 53
10 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/92/Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg/22px-Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belgium) Justine Henin (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Justine_Henin) 48
11 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f3/Flag_of_Switzerland.svg/20px-Flag_of_Switzerland.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Switzerland) Martina Hingis (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martina_Hingis) 45
12 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Venus Williams (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venus_Williams) 41
13 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/92/Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg/22px-Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belgium) Kim Clijsters (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kim_Clijsters) 37
14 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/9a/Flag_of_Spain.svg/22px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spain) Conchita Martínez (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conchita_Mart%C3%ADnez) 36
15 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Serena Williams (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serena_Williams) 33

Jeff
Mar 23rd, 2009, 11:54 PM
I'll still watch tennis, because I enjoy the sport and watching it in general. I can't tell my self "If Venus and Serena retire, well then so do I from watching." It is true, however, that for me it will likely not be the same, but that's from a fan's perspective. The sisters bring so much to the sport on so many levels, so when they are no longer around i can't imagine anyone currently on tour who can make up for what the sisters currently bring to the tour.

Malva
Mar 23rd, 2009, 11:55 PM
Retire? Who is talking about retirement?

Olórin
Mar 24th, 2009, 12:04 AM
The WTA is the most financially strong in its history.
http://www.canadianbusiness.com/managing/strategy/article.jsp?content=20090127_10004_10004

Looking at Singles Titles Won (below), clearly the WTA survived the retirements of its most successful players: Navratilova, Evert, Graf, King, Davenport, Seles, Henin, Hingis, and Clijsters. We're still having great tournaments even without these iconic players. And the Williams' retirement will be a much smaller deal than that of Martina, Chrissy, Steffie, or Lindsay.

Most Singles Titles Won (Open Era)
Player --------------------- No. Titles
1 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/cb/Flag_of_the_Czech_Republic.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_Czech_Republic.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Czech_Republic)/http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Martina Navratilova (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martina_Navratilova) 167
2 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Chris Evert (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chris_Evert) 157
3 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/ba/Flag_of_Germany.svg/22px-Flag_of_Germany.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Germany) Steffi Graf (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steffi_Graf) 107
4 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b9/Flag_of_Australia.svg/22px-Flag_of_Australia.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australia) Margaret Court (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Court) 92
5 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b9/Flag_of_Australia.svg/22px-Flag_of_Australia.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australia) Evonne Goolagong Cawley (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evonne_Goolagong_Cawley) 68
6 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Billie Jean King (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Billie_Jean_King) 67
7 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Lindsay Davenport (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lindsay_Davenport) 55
8 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/ae/Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Kingdom) Virginia Wade (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virginia_Wade) 55
9 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States)/http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/71/Flag_of_SFR_Yugoslavia.svg/22px-Flag_of_SFR_Yugoslavia.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yugoslavia)/http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f8/Flag_of_FR_Yugoslavia.svg/22px-Flag_of_FR_Yugoslavia.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_Republic_of_Yugoslavia) Monica Seles (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monica_Seles) 53
10 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/92/Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg/22px-Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belgium) Justine Henin (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Justine_Henin) 48
11 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f3/Flag_of_Switzerland.svg/20px-Flag_of_Switzerland.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Switzerland) Martina Hingis (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martina_Hingis) 45
12 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Venus Williams (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venus_Williams) 41
13 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/92/Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg/22px-Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belgium) Kim Clijsters (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kim_Clijsters) 37
14 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/9a/Flag_of_Spain.svg/22px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spain) Conchita Martínez (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conchita_Mart%C3%ADnez) 36
15 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Serena Williams (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serena_Williams) 33

Umm, no. It will be same as it is when any prolific champion retires.

No need to copy and paste the same article and wikipedia pages over and over. We can all do that.

bobbynorwich
Mar 24th, 2009, 12:11 AM
Umm, no.

No need to copy and paste the same article and wikipedia pages over and over. We can all do that.

Different threads.

AmeDevotee
Mar 24th, 2009, 01:19 AM
I have to disagree with this. Last year, Larry Scott did his best to sell Ana Ivanovic as the "great new star". Seriously, Ivanovic got promoted close to the same levels as Maria Sharapova, before and after she won the French. When you walk into your local Borders bookshop, and you can see Ana Ivanovic on the cover of FHM in a bikini, you know she's getting serious "star" promotion outside the tennis establishment.

Ana simply couldn't live up to the hype as a player. After the French, she basically crumbled and started getting beaten easily in tournaments. The hoped for Sharapova/Ivanovic rivalry came to nothing.

Jankovic has gotten major "star" promotion as well. Both Ana and Jelena were the big star opponents for the Williams Sisters at the Bille Jean King exhibition. And they got equal billing to the sisters. As with Ivanovic, Jelena is a case of not being able to live up to the hype. A no.1 who couldn't win a grand slam, she was not looked at as someone realistically good enough to challenge the WS at grand slam level.

The tennis going public aren't idiots. They know Jelana and Ana aren't "greats", no matter how many glossy advertising campaigns and exhibition tournaments Larry Scott tries to sell them with. You can't sell the Dementieva as a "great" to the public when she's been a bridesmaid almost all her career at major tournies (till the Olympics) and will probably never win a slam. Even though the WTA has tried to sell Jankovic and Ivanovic as "stars" on par with the Williams sisters, the public sees through it, and knows that they are "the best of the rest".

The tour is sold on the Sisters (and Maria) because they are the only multiple grand slam winners and proven champions on it. And it was only feasible to promote Maria as a "great" to the tennis public, because she beat a Williams sister (Serena) to win the most prestigious Grand Slam in the calender, Wimbledon.

You're forgetting Amelie. She's coming out of her slump now and she's a bigger draw than she's given credit for. :cool:

Kart
Mar 24th, 2009, 01:33 AM
Last year, Larry Scott did his best to sell Ana Ivanovic as the "great new star". Seriously, Ivanovic got promoted close to the same levels as Maria Sharapova, before and after she won the French. When you walk into your local Borders bookshop, and you can see Ana Ivanovic on the cover of FHM in a bikini, you know she's getting serious "star" promotion outside the tennis establishment.

Ana simply couldn't live up to the hype as a player. After the French, she basically crumbled and started getting beaten easily in tournaments. The hoped for Sharapova/Ivanovic rivalry came to nothing.

Jankovic has gotten major "star" promotion as well. Both Ana and Jelena were the big star opponents for the Williams Sisters at the Bille Jean King exhibition. And they got equal billing to the sisters. As with Ivanovic, Jelena is a case of not being able to live up to the hype. A no.1 who couldn't win a grand slam, she was not looked at as someone realistically good enough to challenge the WS at grand slam level.

The tennis going public aren't idiots. They know Jelana and Ana aren't "greats", no matter how many glossy advertising campaigns and exhibition tournaments Larry Scott tries to sell them with. You can't sell the Dementieva as a "great" to the public when she's been a bridesmaid almost all her career at major tournies (till the Olympics) and will probably never win a slam. Even though the WTA has tried to sell Jankovic and Ivanovic as "stars" on par with the Williams sisters, the public sees through it, and knows that they are "the best of the rest".

The tour is sold on the Sisters (and Maria) because they are the only multiple grand slam winners and proven champions on it. And it was only feasible to promote Maria as a "great" to the tennis public, because she beat a Williams sister (Serena) to win the most prestigious Grand Slam in the calender, Wimbledon.
I think I worded my previous comment badly as I'm not disputing any of what you've written.

It makes no difference to me if they're promoting Serena or Ana, IMHO it's too narrow a focus to rely on two or three players to carry the tour.

What I wanted to say was that, instead of promoting single players, the tour should focus on collective promotion with tennis as the primary selling point.

I absolutely accept that star quality is what makes the dramatic headlines but it also means that, in times lean of stars, there won't be any headlines at all because there's no drama - which is what we're heading for when Williams sisters retire.

I think that a lack of promotional foresight is what is ultimately going to screw the tour over - you'll always have players that shine and players that don't. The key is to get people interested enough to want to watch the tennis rather than the players.

Slammer7
Mar 24th, 2009, 04:05 AM
That's the problem with "ratings" obssessed coverage.

Cast your mind back to USO 07.

Prime-time week one was a deluge of first-round Williams/Sharapova straight-sets beatdowns. Any casual viewer tuning in would have the distinct impression that top-level women's tennis is well and truly f*cked.

As luck would have it first Saturday's prime-time clash featuring a couple of "nobody's", Peer v Vaidisova gave us a fantastic match. Peer winning it deep into the third set, had the punters on Ashe rockin' in the aisles.

First of all at the 2007 U.S Open Sharapova lost in the 3rd rnd so she wasn't a factor for that much of the tourney, and Serena struggled in all of her matches. There was nothing routine about her early rounds. The draw was lopsided and the tournament had to resort to creating a fake bottom half by moving the Venus/Jankovic quarterfinal back a day. It was not the tours fault that Kuzzy and the Chak were not exciting.:o

fammmmedspin
Mar 24th, 2009, 04:05 AM
In the sense that the US will have no decent players for the first time its potentially terrible. There's been an awful lot of empty seats at womens tournaments this year as seen on TV - loss of US audiences won't help.
In the sense that their winning another one sided GS final seems to provoke yawns from the media and many fans perhaps its more complex.
The bigger problem is lack of good players who do enough to become known and lack of good competitive finals. Its not the Williams sisters fault that the younger competition just behind them in terms of age retired and the next generation is either too young or too numerous or too unprepared to fill the gap.

Inger67
Mar 24th, 2009, 04:09 AM
Is that a serious question? The Williams Sisters are women's tennis.

Solitaire
Mar 24th, 2009, 04:09 AM
When the sisters retire two great stars will leave the tour. But there was a WTA before the sisters and there will be one after. I'm a big fan of the sisters but them retireing isn't going to kill my love for the game. New stars will come and make a splash as the tour moves on.

bobbynorwich
Mar 24th, 2009, 04:40 AM
The Williams Sisters are women's tennis.

:cuckoo: Delusional :cuckoo:

as1991
Mar 24th, 2009, 04:47 AM
oh puh-lease.....zvonreva is no middle management player........
thy both wer top player
ppl here cant see anythng besides williams!

Inktrailer
Mar 24th, 2009, 08:02 AM
I don't know. Is everyone match that doesn't involve a sister that bad?

No - but there are far too many people who don't bother watching if it isn't a Williams playing or if they do, just want to slag it off. There are plenty of entertaining matches to be had.

Let's face it, every player that tries to do well gets scorned by an awful lot of people here. I think that when the WS retire, the game will change as players will be able to play a more natural game and not have to try to adjust to a power game to be successful. The majority of players just aren't as powerful as the WS and when that factor is reduced from the top level it will allow a different style of game to emerge, one that provides entertaining tennis more consistently. Tennis doesn't NEED a couple of huge stars - it'd be much healthier to have half a dozen top players competing with each other. The bottom line is that the only thing grim about the future is the attitude of some fans.

Inktrailer
Mar 24th, 2009, 08:13 AM
Yes, no U.S. players means that more American companies will stop sponsoring WTA tournaments.

The only one of the 'Premier Mandatory' and 'Premier Five' tournaments that seems to be sponsored by an American company is Cincinnatti.

Le Chat
Mar 24th, 2009, 11:38 AM
No - but there are far too many people who don't bother watching if it isn't a Williams playing or if they do, just want to slag it off. There are plenty of entertaining matches to be had.

Let's face it, every player that tries to do well gets scorned by an awful lot of people here. I think that when the WS retire, the game will change as players will be able to play a more natural game and not have to try to adjust to a power game to be successful. The majority of players just aren't as powerful as the WS and when that factor is reduced from the top level it will allow a different style of game to emerge, one that provides entertaining tennis more consistently. Tennis doesn't NEED a couple of huge stars - it'd be much healthier to have half a dozen top players competing with each other. The bottom line is that the only thing grim about the future is the attitude of some fans.


All the sports need superstars to call the interest of people ...

Before the sisters , African people didnt care much about tennis which was an elite and white sport for them , as much as golf ...as soon as Tiger woods began a superstar people and particulaly Africans put interest in the sport , Therefore tennis became a much more popular game in the world ..

The problem is not the quality of the game "alone" , even after the sisters retire the players can play as good as they can , like they played in the Graf./Seles era , but casual viewers wont care much if they dont have any strong personality whatever the quality of the game , only hardcore fans will find interest in it ...

What the Williams sisters succeed was to win BIG and had BIG personalities at the same time ..;Steffy Graf may have had the better game we have never seen , but been an iceberg without any personality , not enough to draw the interest of casual people , why do you think people LOVE Agassi FAR more than Sampras the Greatest ?... we had to wait for the arrival of monica Seles with her different game and expansive personality to start to see casual viewers putting interest in the game ... .

The WS besides revolutionning the way of play , gave also born to players with strong personalities like Maria Sharapova , you may find her game boring because she is a copycat of the sisters , but fact is she is a superstar and LOVED everywhere she plays ...thats these kind of players WTA needs..

Maybe the game will be more natural as you say and it will have more quality matches ,...but if some ( 2 or 3)of these players dont have a strong personality ...i am afraid that most of casual viewers wont care much about this sport whatever the quality of the match ...


The emptyness will be BIG after the WS retire ...., its maybe sad , but only the thruth..

Inktrailer
Mar 24th, 2009, 11:58 AM
All the sports need superstars to call the interest of people ...

Before the sisters , African people didnt care much about tennis which was an elite and white sport for them , as much as golf ...as soon as Tiger woods began a superstar people and particulaly Africans put interest in the sport , Therefore tennis became a much more popular game in the world ..

The problem is not the quality of the game "alone" , even after the sisters retire the players can play as good as they can , like they played in the Graf./Seles era , but casual viewers wont care much if they dont have any strong personality whatever the quality of the game , only hardcore fans will find interest in it ...

What the Williams sisters succeed was to win BIG and had BIG personalities at the same time ..;Steffy Graf may have had the better game we have never seen , but been an iceberg without any personality , not enough to draw the interest of casual people , why do you think people LOVE Agassi FAR more than Sampras the Greatest ?... we had to wait for the arrival of monica Seles with her different game and expansive personality to start to see casual viewers putting interest in the game ... .

The WS besides revolutionning the way of play , gave also born to players with strong personalities like Maria Sharapova , you may find her game boring because she is a copycat of the sisters , but fact is she is a superstar and LOVED everywhere she plays ...thats these kind of players WTA needs..

Maybe the game will be more natural as you say and it will have more quality matches ,...but if some ( 2 or 3)of these players dont have a strong personality ...i am afraid that most of casual viewers wont care much about this sport whatever the quality of the match ...


The emptyness will be BIG after the WS retire ...., its maybe sad , but only the thruth..

I completely agree about personalities, people are drawn to players be it a Jankovic, Ivanovic, Azarenka, Safina, whoever. I like players largely because of their personalities. But as for casual viewers, well who cares if someone only tunes in for the Slams and doesn't recognise the players because they haven't appeared in mainstream media for whatever reason? Upcoming players get their chance to show their own personality the more exposure they get amongst tennis fans; if that isn't also a player who's a 'celebrity' to the outside world, I don't think it matters.

LudwigDvorak
Mar 24th, 2009, 12:07 PM
The Williams' in a sense have screwed tennis. Now everyone without a brain (and those are many) thinks tennis can't survive without them. :weirdo:

I know they're great champions, and I love Venus, and I'm glad they're still around, but it's just pathetic clinging onto them like this. They're grown women. When they want to move on, they will, and so will the game. Top players and stars will emerge in the future. DUHHHHH.

Sam L
Mar 24th, 2009, 12:48 PM
I don't even want to think about it. :sad:

Le Chat
Mar 24th, 2009, 01:13 PM
The Williams' in a sense have screwed tennis. Now everyone without a brain (and those are many) thinks tennis can't survive without them. :weirdo:

I know they're great champions, and I love Venus, and I'm glad they're still around, but it's just pathetic clinging onto them like this. They're grown women. When they want to move on, they will, and so will the game. Top players and stars will emerge in the future. DUHHHHH.


Its those who think the others dont have brain who actually dont have any brain ...:rolleyes:

We are discussing , nobody has attaqued nobody just state their opinion ..so stop saying people are brainless...

LudwigDvorak
Mar 24th, 2009, 01:35 PM
Its those who think the others dont have brain who actually dont have any brain ...:rolleyes:

We are discussing , nobody has attaqued nobody just state their opinion ..so stop saying people are brainless...

It's hard not to get a little jumpy when you casually look through the first page on GM and see everything about why the WTA sucks, what needs to be done to fix it, everything is awful, blah blah blah, and it all centers around Venus and Serena or Steffi or Monica or Jennifer or Lindsay or Justine or Chris or WHOEVER ELSE not being able to save it.

I maintain a pretty calm disposition about most things, especially tennis now, but it's just funny no one is happy with what they have. Instead of worrying about "if tennis is screwed" when they leave, cherish every. single. match. they play now. It's like magic.

Marshmallow
Mar 24th, 2009, 01:45 PM
The WTA is the most financially strong in its history.
http://www.canadianbusiness.com/managing/strategy/article.jsp?content=20090127_10004_10004

Looking at Singles Titles Won (below), clearly the WTA survived the retirements of its most successful players: Navratilova, Evert, Graf, King, Davenport, Seles, Henin, Hingis, and Clijsters. We're still having great tournaments even without these iconic players. And the Williams' retirement will be a much smaller deal than that of Martina, Chrissy, Steffie, or Lindsay.

Most Singles Titles Won (Open Era)
Player --------------------- No. Titles
1 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/cb/Flag_of_the_Czech_Republic.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_Czech_Republic.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Czech_Republic)/http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Martina Navratilova (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martina_Navratilova) 167
2 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Chris Evert (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chris_Evert) 157
3 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/ba/Flag_of_Germany.svg/22px-Flag_of_Germany.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Germany) Steffi Graf (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steffi_Graf) 107
4 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b9/Flag_of_Australia.svg/22px-Flag_of_Australia.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australia) Margaret Court (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Court) 92
5 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/b9/Flag_of_Australia.svg/22px-Flag_of_Australia.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australia) Evonne Goolagong Cawley (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evonne_Goolagong_Cawley) 68
6 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Billie Jean King (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Billie_Jean_King) 67
7 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Lindsay Davenport (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lindsay_Davenport) 55
8 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/ae/Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Kingdom) Virginia Wade (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virginia_Wade) 55
9 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States)/http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/71/Flag_of_SFR_Yugoslavia.svg/22px-Flag_of_SFR_Yugoslavia.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yugoslavia)/http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f8/Flag_of_FR_Yugoslavia.svg/22px-Flag_of_FR_Yugoslavia.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_Republic_of_Yugoslavia) Monica Seles (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monica_Seles) 53
10 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/92/Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg/22px-Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belgium) Justine Henin (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Justine_Henin) 48
11 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f3/Flag_of_Switzerland.svg/20px-Flag_of_Switzerland.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Switzerland) Martina Hingis (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martina_Hingis) 45
12 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Venus Williams (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venus_Williams) 41
13 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/92/Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg/22px-Flag_of_Belgium_%28civil%29.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belgium) Kim Clijsters (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kim_Clijsters) 37
14 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/9a/Flag_of_Spain.svg/22px-Flag_of_Spain.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spain) Conchita Martínez (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conchita_Mart%C3%ADnez) 36
15 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a4/Flag_of_the_United_States.svg/22px-Flag_of_the_United_States.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States) Serena Williams (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serena_Williams) 33

The list is incorrect. Hingis has 43 titles, and Henin has 41 titles, tied with Venus. Soon at ascend obviously. :)

Le Chat
Mar 24th, 2009, 01:45 PM
It's hard not to get a little jumpy when you casually look through the first page on GM and see everything about why the WTA sucks, what needs to be done to fix it, everything is awful, blah blah blah, and it all centers around Venus and Serena or Steffi or Monica or Jennifer or Lindsay or Justine or Chris or WHOEVER ELSE not being able to save it.

I maintain a pretty calm disposition about most things, especially tennis now, but it's just funny no one is happy with what they have. Instead of worrying about "if tennis is screwed" when they leave, cherish every. single. match. they play now. It's like magic.


If people are not happy with the state of tennis .., then they are not happy . Its useless to atempt to convince people by insulting them ..on the contrary it will be worst if they feel you want to force them to think like you .

If you dont agree then try to convince with arguments and not insults ..its more efficient ... .

sweetpeas
Mar 24th, 2009, 02:00 PM
Yes. For me, anyway. I was too bored this week to watch any matches but the final. I guess I'm more a fan of Serena than of tennis, so yeah, in my case, tennis will be screwed once she is gone. Although I'd probably watch the slams as a casual viewer.



Same feeling here!

Br'er Rabbit
Mar 24th, 2009, 02:20 PM
Serena and Venus are the reason why I started following tennis in the first place, so if they leave tennis then I will aswell. Lindsay was one I followed other than the WS and she's gone now, and the only other player I can tolerate is Maria and she's nowhere to be seen. People can say the game is bad right now, I think tthe majority of those ppl who say that are just upset none of their favs are winning the slams, but of course when the WS go on a slam winning streak ppl will say that.

Vlover
Mar 24th, 2009, 02:39 PM
I absolutely accept that star quality is what makes the dramatic headlines but it also means that, in times lean of stars, there won't be any headlines at all because there's no drama - which is what we're heading for when Williams sisters retire.

In order to attract interest in any sports it is more than just the XO's. The intangibles of star power and a unique story line along with the great plays is what is important. Manufacturing star power can only get you so far but if you are not able to deliver people lose interest.

The Sisters were able to cultivate the intangible star quality from they set foot on the tennis courts and have been able to hold that interest continuously to this day. Isn't it interesting that regardless of who is on "top" at any period they are always considered the challengers to the Sisters. Even at their worst a win against them is counted as "big" and great celebration.:lol:

It is undeniable that they have made the greatest impact on women's tennis for the last decade. I for one refuse, to think about their retirement until '2012.;) I will continue to enjoy them as much as possible presently and pray for them being healthy until then.:hearts:

freeyourstyle
Mar 24th, 2009, 03:17 PM
silly question ...
of course NOT, was tennis screwed after hingis, seles, navratilova or graf retired?

currently the top 20/30 are with very good players ...
and people who say they started to watch tennis just because of the williams sisters and will stop with tennis when they retire are just ridicolous :lol:

either you LOVE tennis or you dont, people who just watch or play tennis because of one/two players are just wannabes ...