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View Full Version : Has men's tennis reclaimed the torch from the WTA?


vogus
Jan 25th, 2004, 05:43 PM
after years of taking a beating at the hands of the women in popular appeal, it seems like the ATP is once again thriving in terms of having captivating star players and rivalries. For the first time since the pre-Spice Girls days (1996), the men look to have a clear marketing advantage over the women. I'm not saying the women have gotten boring, but most of the WTA's captivating rivalries, storylines, and personalities of the last 7-8 years have simply dried up. For those of us who are hardcore fans, the women are probly as interesting as ever, but i'm talking about wider public perception here, which is reflected in areas like TV and overall media coverage.

Bezz
Jan 25th, 2004, 05:54 PM
I think womens popularity has gone down since the late 90's. I think with graf retireing and now Hingis gone, Kournikova having not played in so long, monica's injury's and age, jenn slumping again. I think the williams and belgians, the russians and of course Anna when she gets back can increase the popularity more. Yu need players to be fit to have long rivalries, hingis, davenport and the williams never really had long injuries, they were just minor ones. The tour just needs to stay healthy with the top 6-8 women fightin it out..

wongqks
Jan 25th, 2004, 06:00 PM
I think you have a point, but then this is mostly due to the fact that injuries plagued and ruined half of the season last year and also right now.

Having said that men tennis is getting exciting, coz players like Federer, Agassi, Hewitt Safin, Roddick, Ferrero, Nalbanian etc. are really stepping up their authority over the rest of players, and the second week gonna be so exciting. However here come a hypocrisy.

I was watching BBC just now, and they are just all praise about how it is gonna be so exciting with so many household name advancing in men tennis. But they are complaining that there are not so many big names in women tennis. At the same time it was them who complain about the lack of depth in women tennis a couple years ago when the top 5/6 women really slaughtered the draw until the quarters (yes I am talking about you Andrew Castle ;) ) In the end, average viewer want to watch matches which involved match with names which they recognised, most people will be happy to turn on their TV and watch Williams vs Kournikova for example even though most people know that Williams will win.

I disagree that it is all going downhill for women tennis though. If we are lucky, we will have at least 5 more years for the sisters and Belgians as they seem to want to haeva long career, eventually there will be someone who will be stepping up and challenge them as well. WTA need to have a more clear and focus marketing strategy. But in the end there is a limit for what they can do, there will always be a prejudice over men sport whichever way you look at it.

Bezz
Jan 25th, 2004, 06:03 PM
By the way i didnt mean it was going down by the late 90's, cos if anything womens tennis was the most popular it has ever been from 98-2001.

SerialKiller#69
Jan 25th, 2004, 06:16 PM
I think you have a point, but then this is mostly due to the fact that injuries plagued and ruined half of the season last year and also right now.

Having said that men tennis is getting exciting, coz players like Federer, Agassi, Hewitt Safin, Roddick, Ferrero, Nalbanian etc. are really stepping up their authority over the rest of players, and the second week gonna be so exciting. However here come a hypocrisy.

I was watching BBC just now, and they are just all praise about how it is gonna be so exciting with so many household name advancing in men tennis. But they are complaining that there are not so many big names in women tennis. At the same time it was them who complain about the lack of depth in women tennis a couple years ago when the top 5/6 women really slaughtered the draw until the quarters (yes I am talking about you Andrew Castle ;) ) In the end, average viewer want to watch matches which involved match with names which they recognised, most people will be happy to turn on their TV and watch Williams vs Kournikova for example even though most people know that Williams will win.

I disagree that it is all going downhill for women tennis though. If we are lucky, we will have at least 5 more years for the sisters and Belgians as they seem to want to haeva long career, eventually there will be someone who will be stepping up and challenge them as well. WTA need to have a more clear and focus marketing strategy. But in the end there is a limit for what they can do, there will always be a prejudice over men sport whichever way you look at it.
By the way, doesn't Kim intend to retire at most two years from now? I think I've read that somewhere.

I personally have really become a lot more interested with men's tennis last year than the WTA. Personally because it's becoming reminiscent of the WTA drama and the exciting 'rivalries' that are forming between the youngsters. Safin has returned and he has declared that he's eyeing the No. 1 spot. Hewitt is back and it's interesting what this season holds for him. The legend Agassi is still reigning among the tops even though it's been said that he's thinking of settling down. Philippousis, Srichapan, Coria, Schuettler.. It just couldn't get any better.

For the meanwhile, WTA has been plagued with injury. Venus couldn't hold up for at least the QFs to set up a popular match-up. Hingis has retired. Kournikova, Dokic, Seles, Pierce, Capriati, Serena are nowhere. There is infact a lack of large names. There's a big void in women's tennis that is apparent for the casual viewers.

esquímaux
Jan 25th, 2004, 06:49 PM
Has men's tennis reclaimed the torch from the WTA?

no

Pureracket
Jan 25th, 2004, 06:53 PM
Well, well, now we're wondering where we're going to turn after we've killed the Williams Sisters.

harloo
Jan 25th, 2004, 07:00 PM
Well, well, now we're wondering where we're going to turn after we've killed the Williams Sisters.:lol:

bandabou
Jan 25th, 2004, 07:24 PM
I don´t know about marketing and stuff....but right now the most compelling matches are on the men´s side. Roger vs Hewitt, Marat vs Andy....some serious stuff going there.

fried_beans
Jan 25th, 2004, 07:28 PM
the answer to the title of this thread is yes...it is way more interesting now.

fried_beans
Jan 25th, 2004, 07:28 PM
and just better quality, more consistent, well constructed tennis in general.

Philip
Jan 25th, 2004, 07:58 PM
hasnt mens tennis always won over womens??
well, in the uk it seems that way, probably because we have no top players. only tim.

:banghead:

Crazy_Fool
Jan 25th, 2004, 08:04 PM
Mens tennis has always had more depth than womens tennis. There are so many outstanding young men with loads of talent like Roddic, Federer, Ferrero, Nalbandian, Hewitt, Safin Coria, Nadal. I mean these players are gonna be around for some time. Womens tennis is like the same old players getting to slam finals all the time. Great if u like that, and if its my player i do, but i also like some variety.

wongqks
Jan 25th, 2004, 08:07 PM
Mens tennis has always had more depth than womens tennis. There are so many outstanding young men with loads of talent like Roddic, Federer, Ferrero, Nalbandian, Hewitt, Safin Coria, Nadal. I mean these players are gonna be around for some time. Womens tennis is like the same old players getting to slam finals all the time. Great if u like that, and if its my player i do, but i also like some variety.
I am sorry there is so contradiction in here. It is ok to have same old player like Agassi and young generations like Federer and Hewitt and Roddick to lift titles for years to come but it is criminal to see the same old Williams sisters and Henin-Hardenne to dominate tennis :confused:

Thierry's_Ladee
Jan 25th, 2004, 08:10 PM
The belgian girls are fantastic players they just dont gave so much spunk about them as the spice girls, jen and the williams sisters. And Monica cos she's such a favorite.
The wta tor is lacking bigtime at the moment.

The atp is hott at the moment with AA and ARod (its less hot cos Moya and Blake are no longer in the tournie ;) ) but you know hewiit - fed should be a cracker a 4th round match. on the womens side we'll be lucky if the final has any spice to it. However like i said no disrespect to Kim, or Juju at all they are fenomenal players.

SerialKiller#69
Jan 25th, 2004, 08:12 PM
But ofcourse, I'd leave a Roddick vs Federer finals to watch a 1R Kournikova vs Hantuchova.:tape:

Crazy_Fool
Jan 25th, 2004, 08:13 PM
I am sorry there is so contradiction in here. It is ok to have same old player like Agassi and young generations like Federer and Hewitt and Roddick to lift titles for years to come but it is criminal to see the same old Williams sisters and Henin-Hardenne to dominate tennis :confused:
I dont see Agassi, Federer or Roddick getting to every slam semi or final which they play. Do you? They are top players but its not the same old story with them is it.

wongqks
Jan 25th, 2004, 08:32 PM
I am not trying to disprove your arguement, but what I am saying is that this is the same old arguement, if Roger, Andy etc went head to head, press etc. will think that it is so great for men tennis, when there are lots of upsets, you see them saying there is just too much depth.

Okay now we will definitely get a surprised semifinalist and what I heard from commentators are that it is a boring and dissappointing tournament for the women.

Is this contradiction justified?

Scotso
Jan 25th, 2004, 08:33 PM
In a word, yes.

Crazy_Fool
Jan 25th, 2004, 08:36 PM
I am not trying to disprove your arguement, but what I am saying is that this is the same old arguement, if Roger, Andy etc went head to head, press etc. will think that it is so great for men tennis, when there are lots of upsets, you see them saying there is just too much depth.

Okay now we will definitely get a surprised semifinalist and what I heard from commentators are that it is a boring and dissappointing tournament for the women.

Is this contradiction justified?
hmmm, that is a contradicton. but i think it has been a boring competition cos serena, jen, monica all pulled out early and venus went early. what i am trying to say is there is more depth cos top 20 players can do big things. but when it comes to the likes of Lisa Raymond, you know she will be knocked out soon.

wongqks
Jan 25th, 2004, 08:40 PM
yes that is just my point, I mean any real tennis enthusiasts will definitely think this year aus open is definitely a men tennis tournament. I enjoy a lot and look forward to matches like Hewitt v Federer and Roddick v Safin

we also have a great potential to have some great lineups. I am just addressing this contradiction to some commentators who cannot praise women tennis when it is exciting and put them down as hard as they can when we faced a situation like this tournament.

ys
Jan 25th, 2004, 08:42 PM
Of course. Without Steffi, Martina and Anna, practically without Monica there is no players left who could lift the popularity of the sport. Williamses are popular only within quite limited number of people, and, what's more important, they don't care about Tour, they play very little tennis, they only care about themselves. Henin made enough to become notorious even among those appreciating her talent. Mauresmo, Davenport and Clijsters will never attract many tennis fans, simply because, frankly, they are not as attractive as females. Women's tennis is losing popularity, full of injuries, and lacks personalities.

ATP, on the other hand, with Federer, Ferrero, Roddick at full swing, Hewitt and Safin fighting their way back, Nalbandyan coming up, Agassi still very well capable is very close to being back to the Golden Era of 80s and pre-Sampras 90s.

In other words, it has never benn a contest in terms of quality of tennis, now it is no longer a contest in terms of entertainment.

gmak
Jan 25th, 2004, 08:47 PM
i agree with ys

kim amelie lindsay justine etc. are great players but they are not as popular as martina, anna, mary and others who have retired or out of action. injuries have taken their toll as well.

on the men's side there are 7-8 men who can win the AO at the moment.
lots of rivalries and lots of personalities...

Thierry's_Ladee
Jan 25th, 2004, 08:49 PM
All the big names on the womens side havent featured and if they have they have exited early. The players in their places are not all that good or all that interesting.

When they come back however theres not alot better than high quality, high drama womens tennis.

bandabou
Jan 25th, 2004, 09:11 PM
Of course. Without Steffi, Martina and Anna, practically without Monica there is no players left who could lift the popularity of the sport. Williamses are popular only within quite limited number of people, and, what's more important, they don't care about Tour, they play very little tennis, they only care about themselves. Henin made enough to become notorious even among those appreciating her talent. Mauresmo, Davenport and Clijsters will never attract many tennis fans, simply because, frankly, they are not as attractive as females. Women's tennis is losing popularity, full of injuries, and lacks personalities.

ATP, on the other hand, with Federer, Ferrero, Roddick at full swing, Hewitt and Safin fighting their way back, Nalbandyan coming up, Agassi still very well capable is very close to being back to the Golden Era of 80s and pre-Sampras 90s.

In other words, it has never benn a contest in terms of quality of tennis, now it is no longer a contest in terms of entertainment.

I actually could´ve agreed with you....but then you said Steffi was popular and then the thesis didn´t stand anymore.

jenny161185
Jan 25th, 2004, 09:54 PM
I think it has well mens tennis isn t suffering as it was maybe two yrs ago - the fact that many of the very talented men have stepped up to the plate and all become consistent has made it very interesting ie andre roddick federer hewitt ferrero and others

tennisIlove09
Jan 25th, 2004, 09:57 PM
The men, at this event, have a clear advantage over the women. They did before the event started, just because so many of the stars were out (Serena, Pierce, Capriati, Seles).

It's very rare in an ATP event that the top players all advance, as they have at the Aussie. One event doesn't make it all.

But it could. The WTA needs to get Venus and Serena back...healthy and playing well (meaning both in the top 10, and probably top 4 to almost ensure the chances of the Williams/Williams finals) to really begin to do well again. Like it or not, when the sisters are healthy and playing well, there is more attention on the game. Especially if they can meet in the finals.

Greenout
Jan 26th, 2004, 01:39 AM
I agree that men's tennis has raised it's level of popularity; but
it's because Sampras is gone- he had a virtual monopoly of tv coverage.
Unlike the past generation of player European players, the new breed
aren't particulary buddies with each other. This adds to a rivalry of
sorts. Safin, JCF, Fed, Hewitt are all not too keen on Andy Roddick
and that haven't hid the fact either.

About the WTA- I disagree about the decline of women's tennis. Sure there's
no Monica, Anna or Hingis now. And the Sisters are off and on- but there's
a new generation of fans on board now. If your a fan of Jen's or Monica's I'm
sure you might not be interested too much now. I think in terms of a massive
general audience it may have peaked with Anna and the Sisters. The new
tennis fans are more into the tennis and couldn't relate to the flamboyant
lifestyles of Anna or the Sisters. The new fan is from Europe, and more
likely Asia rather than the USA.

I've been a tennis web board posters since 1999 and the boards are as
healthy or even healthier then ever since it's peak in 2000. 2001-2002
were down years in terms of fan interest on the internet. Despite what
you think of the Belgians- they have raised the level of interest in the tennis fan again. These new fans may not even remember much of Hingis back in 1998;but the activity of bashing against the Belgians on the internet is very much like the hey day of Hingis bashing. If nobody watched tennis there wouldn't be bashing threads.

The new tennis fan enjoys Roddick or Federer as much as Kim or Justine
or Daniela. It's not the general population nor the American general
population. It's become more global and IMHO the new fan doesn't
only watch ATP or WTA matches. It's not men against women with the
new younger fan.