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Aryman3
Jul 14th, 2010, 03:04 AM
DESPITE BRILLIANCE OF SERENA, WTA TOUR A MONUMENTAL DISAPPOINTMENT SO FAR IN 2010

Posted by WTM on July 13, 2010

By Charles Bricker

With the exception of Serena Williams, who recently delivered one of the great fortnights of her career by sweeping through Wimbledon, the women’s tour has been a monumental disappointment in 2010.

Not just because of the lack of memorable matches, but because the season began with such heavy optimism.

The Williams sisters appeared to be healthy. Justine Henin and Kim Clijsters, two enormous talents, were back on tour after early retirements. Maria Sharapova had returned from shoulder surgery. There was the usual array of persistent top-fives in Elena Dementieva, Jelena Jankovic and Dinara Safina. And, finally, some impressive young players who looked ready to join either the elite or the near-elite on the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour — led by Caroline Wozniacki.

All this and more made it appear as though women’s tennis was in for a very impressive year, but what we’ve gotten instead are more injuries and the disappointing showing of players from whom we expected much more.

Serena, though she has played only six tournaments, has done most of the heavy lifting, winning the Australian Open and Wimbledon and not exhibiting anything close to the anger management problems she had at last year’s U.S. Open.

But the rest of the cast of characters has fallen short and, as a result, so has the women’s tour. Still, it’s only the halfway point in the season. The U.S. hardcourt season is nearly upon us and there is an abundance of time for some of these other players to assert themselves.

Let’s go down the list:

* Serena Williams: Started the year at No. 1 and remains No. 1. Defeated Henin in the Aussie Open final, lost in the quarters of the French to Stosur, won Wimbledon without losing a set, defeating Vera Zvonareva in the championship match. Five top-20 wins and six if you count Henin, who was unranked at the time because of a lack of comeback matches but who is a former No. 1. Record: 25-4. Grade: A+.

* Venus Williams: Began the year at No. 6, now No. 4. She’s won two tournaments, but not against impressive fields. More telling is her work at the Slams — lost in the quarters at Australia to Li Na, in the round of 16 at the French to Nadia Petrova and in the quarters of Wimbledon to No. 82 Tsvetana Pironkova. At 30, she’s not the player she was even two years ago. Hasn’t won an important event in a long time and some very bad losses indicates a possible stamina problem. Record: 33-6. Grade: C.

* Kim Clijsters: Began the year at No. 18, now No. 7. When she won the 2009 U.S. Open, I thought she was fully back. Now, you’re entitled to ponder if she’s fully committed to the game, as she was before she began thinking about retirement a few years ago? Lost in the second round at Australia to Petrova 6-0, 6-1, an embarrassing result. But then she won Key Biscayne before injuring her foot and missing the French. A strong win over Henin in the Wimbledon quarters was followed by a quarterfinal loss to Zvonareva. No consistency. Record: 22-5. Grade: B-.

* Justine Henin: She has been similarly in and out of form and, while she looks just as quick and athletic as ever, her patience in the grinding points isn’t what it once was. Began the year unranked, came on the rankings at No. 33 with a semifinal finish at Key Biscayne and is now No. 13. She’s not top 10, which is very surprising, because she went out in the round of 16 at both the French (Stosur) and Wimbledon (Clijsters). Like others, a good won/lost record, but not good enough in the majors. Moreover, she’s out for the foreseeable future with an injury. Probably will miss the U.S. Open. Record: 32-8. Grade: C.

* Maria Sharapova: Started the year at No. 14, now No. 15. She has two titles, against soft fields at Memphis and Strasbourg, so she’s piling up the wins, but not in the right places. After shoulder surgery last year, she changed her serve and went through a long period of adjusting her motion in which she rolled up beaucoup double faults. That seems mostly ironed out now, but she’s still not close to the form that took her to three major titles. Lost first round at Australia to Maria Kirilenko, third round at the French to Henin and round of 16 at Wimbledon to Serena. No great shame in most of those losses, but she hasn’t recorded that one big win that moves her forward. Record: 20-6. Grade: C.

* Jelena Jankovic: Started the year at No. 8, now No. 2. She won Indian Wells, where, of course, neither of the Williams sisters played. Nevertheless, give her high marks for the title and for defeating Wozniacki in the final. She also has a runner-up finish at Rome, where she beat the sisters in succession. The problem is she’s not getting any bounce. She then got to the semis at the French, where she was blown out by Stosur, and went out to Zvonareva at Wimbledon with a retirement. Just when we thought she had reached a high new level of fitness (44 matches at this point), she hurt her back. Her immediate schedule is now a question mark, though she’s signed to play Portorez, July 19. Record: 32-12. Grade: B.

* Caroline Wozniacki: Started the year at No. 4, now No. 3. After all those matches in 2009, I wondered if she would back off in 2010. Not by much. At the halfway point, she’s played 43 matches, but she’s clearly not as effective as a year ago. Went out in the round of 16 at Australia to Li, in the French quarters to Francesca Schiavone (who won the tournament) and in the round of 16 at Wimbledon to Petra Kvitova by 6-2, 6-0. She needs to retrench and rethink her schedule. Record: 30-13. Grade: D+.

* Dinara Safina: Out almost the entire year with injury. She has become a non-entity this year — just another women’s tour disappointment. Hasn’t won a match since April. Record: 5-7. Grade: Incomplete.

* Notable surprise players: Stosur and Schiavone.

* Two who were headed north a couple years ago who haven’t made the next plateau: Agnieszka Radwanska and Victoria Azarenka.

Women’s tennis can be exciting, but right now it needs its best and most marketable players to start winning the big ones. Outside of Serena Williams, they’re not, and you can see the result at this last Wimbledon, where the women were not much more than a footnote to the men’s tournament, which produced an 11-hour match, a quarterfinal loss by Roger Federer that delivered some world-wide shock waves, a prodigious effort by Tomas Berdych and an eighth major title by Rafa Nadal.

Most of the women listed here will be back on court by the end of July, hopefully well rested and ready to start playing up to their potential.

Volcana
Jul 14th, 2010, 03:39 AM
Given how he's setup his expectations, that's not an unfair assessment, assuming he's give B's to Stosur and Schiavone.

edificio
Jul 14th, 2010, 06:06 AM
This guy is full of it. But as soon as I saw the name Bricker, I figured this would be a bad article. He gives Venus a C when she was as high as no. 2 (doesn't bother to mention it). She defended two titles, reached the finals of two others, reached quarters at Rome, 4th r at RG, etc. She's 33-6. Sure she should have won at least two other tourneys, had the opportunity, but...come on, dude. He doesn't even mention how boring Berdych in the final turned out to be. Thumbs down!

He gives Jelena a B and she's 32-12. Ridiculous.

I never think of this guy as a great tennis writer. He seems to be fulfilling his obligtion here, just wanting to be negative about the WTA.

Shvedbarilescu
Jul 14th, 2010, 07:36 AM
I won't name names but this article almost looks like it could have been written by one or another of the more negative posters of this very forum. Yeah, it's that bad.

Steven.
Jul 14th, 2010, 07:57 AM
Well if you put it in perspective, he's only grading the very top players of the tour. It would be pretty damn hard to get an A with all of their inconsistency, outside of Venus (but expectations for her was high anyway) and when placed against Serena.

Gdsimmons
Jul 14th, 2010, 01:23 PM
I dont see the problem. I think he is pretty accurate in his description

TennisFan66
Jul 14th, 2010, 01:38 PM
Cannot say I know Charles Bricker, but I googled him and apparently he writes for Prime Sports Network. Which I don't know either. Maybe its just me. Anyho the dude is entitled to his opinion.

TS
Jul 14th, 2010, 01:45 PM
The grades are a little harsh, but what he has to say isn't far from the truth.

serenafan08
Jul 14th, 2010, 01:53 PM
:shrug: Seems pretty accurate to me...although giving Jankovic a B was a little generous in my opinion. But the tour has pretty much been a disappointment besides Serena winning the Slams. The Russians are slumping, the Belgians haven't hit a consistent stride yet, the young girls are still mentally struggling in the spotlight. What he said isn't too far removed from the truth.

miffedmax
Jul 14th, 2010, 01:54 PM
The grades are a little harsh, but what he has to say isn't far from the truth.

Agree. Dementieva getting another "Incompletes" hasn't helped things either.

So far, this has been a really bad year for the tour, and there's no way around it.

TennisFan66
Jul 14th, 2010, 02:11 PM
Agree. Dementieva getting another "Incompletes" hasn't helped things either.

So far, this has been a really bad year for the tour, and there's no way around it.

Is that not a matter of opinion and perspective? .. I would imagine in Italy its the best tour year ever .. In France they are probably not too unhappy either with Rezais 1H performances. Australians up in the middle of the night to watch Stosur play tennis in Paris...

Just to mention of a few of the interesting and exciting tour stories this year. Tour = WTA. Slams are ITF. But thats not what we're talking here. Right?

Vlover
Jul 14th, 2010, 02:14 PM
Posted by WTM on July 13, 2010

By Charles Bricker

With the exception of Serena Williams, who recently delivered one of the great fortnights of her career by sweeping through Wimbledon, the women’s tour has been a monumental disappointment in 2010.


* Venus Williams: Record: 33-6. Grade: C.


* Jelena Jankovic: Record: 32-12. Grade: B.

you can see the result at this last Wimbledon, where the women were not much more than a footnote to the men’s tournament...
I guess he is speaking for himself and those who are upset that Serena remains at the top and their jubilant anticipations didn't live up to their expectations.:lol: When you have to make an exception for the #1 player in the world who played to her seeding that is a dead give away.:rolleyes:

What is "bad" for the #1 player on the WTA to win 2/3 majors but it is great on the ATP that the #1 player also won 2/3 majors. The above highlighted just wreaks of his chauvinistic views because it is only in his mind that the women were just a footnote to the men.:unsure: Both finals were uneventful straight set wins so I don't know what he is talking about. Yea, so there was a boring ace-fest 1st round match that went on for 3 days and the players didn't pass the 2nd round, how exciting.:rolleyes:

Anyway can someone explain the math to me why 33-6 record is a C but a 32-12 is a B.:help: All this :bs: is just more evidence that objective journalism in tennis is very, very, very scarce.:tape:

HippityHop
Jul 14th, 2010, 02:45 PM
I guess he is speaking for himself and those who are upset that Serena remains at the top and their jubilant anticipations didn't live up to their expectations.:lol: When you have to make an exception for the #1 player in the world who played to her seeding that is a dead give away.:rolleyes:

What is "bad" for the #1 player on the WTA to win 2/3 majors but it is great on the ATP that the #1 player also won 2/3 majors. The above highlighted just wreaks of his chauvinistic views because it is only in his mind that the women were just a footnote to the men.:unsure: Both finals were uneventful straight set wins so I don't know what he is talking about. Yea, so there was a boring ace-fest 1st round match that went on for 3 days and the players didn't pass the 2nd round, how exciting.:rolleyes:

Anyway can someone explain the math to me why 33-6 record is a C but a 32-12 is a B.:help: All this :bs: is just more evidence that objective journalism in tennis is very, very, very scarce.:tape:

Absolutely.

terjw
Jul 14th, 2010, 02:53 PM
Well he's right as far as the reports and gradings for the top players.

But that doesn't mean the women's game and the tour as a whole is really bad. It's never had more depth and in that sense it's better. And when it was predictable with the top players always winning - we just got criticism that there was no depth and women's tennis was boring with it's predictability. So you can't win. And as for his injuries comment - well that's a fact of life every year nowadays.

This article reinforces that apart from death and taxes there are two other certainties in life:

Women's tennis will always be criticised no matter what the women do.
Women's tennis will suffer from injuries.

The Witch-king
Jul 14th, 2010, 02:55 PM
Agree. Dementieva getting another "Incompletes" hasn't helped things either.

So far, this has been a really bad year for the tour, and there's no way around it.

Ever since I joiend this forum/started following tennis seriously (circa 2008) every year is a bad year for the tour.

Weird, huh?

terjw
Jul 14th, 2010, 03:04 PM
Anyway can someone explain the math to me why 33-6 record is a C but a 32-12 is a B.:help: All this :bs: is just more evidence that objective journalism in tennis is very, very, very scarce.:tape:

Well I wouldn't expect gradings to blindly follow the W:L record. I always assumed gradings like this are based on how they've actually done compared to their capability and what was expected from them at the start of the year.

TennisFan66
Jul 14th, 2010, 03:21 PM
Well he's right as far as the reports and gradings for the top players.

This article reinforces that apart from death and taxes there are two other certainties in life:
Women's tennis will always be criticised no matter what the women do.
Women's tennis will suffer from injuries.


All sport has injuries, but true. .. Puzzling really. WTA is a fabulous success story. Tennis is the biggest female sport (attendance, TV rating, endorsements) in the world. Its the only sport I can think of, where the women are near level with the men in before mentioned categories.

Yet we have (disgruntled?) journos and judging from this board, tennis 'fans', whom always want to talk about how poor the tour is doing and blah blah.
Naturally totally ignoring real life numbers. Probably just going by their own 'gut' ..
Time to wake up an smell the coffee. These people sound like bitter stock analysts who recommended a sell on a stock, which is flying. :lol:

The Witch-king
Jul 14th, 2010, 03:29 PM
Well I wouldn't expect gradings to blindly follow the W:L record. I always assumed gradings like this are based on how they've actually done compared to their capability and what was expected from them at the start of the year.

Bullshit.

Bondarenko, Alona (UKR) 30 L 6-2 6-3
Zvonareva, Vera (RUS) 14 L 6-3 6-2
Sevastova, Anastasija (LAT) 72 L 5-7 6-4 6-4
Stosur, Samantha (AUS) 10 L 6-1 7-6(9)
Hantuchova, Daniela (SVK) 24 L 1-6 6-3 6-3
Hantuchova, Daniela (SVK) 23 L 7-6(2) 7-5
Henin, Justine (BEL) 24 L 3-6 7-6(4) 6-3
Martinez Sanchez, Maria Jose (ESP) 26 L 7-6(5) 7-5 .
Rezai, Aravane (FRA) 24 L 7-5 6-4
Stosur, Samantha (AUS) 7 L 6-1 6-2

BuTtErFrEnA
Jul 14th, 2010, 03:40 PM
I guess he is speaking for himself and those who are upset that Serena remains at the top and their jubilant anticipations didn't live up to their expectations.:lol: When you have to make an exception for the #1 player in the world who played to her seeding that is a dead give away.:rolleyes:

What is "bad" for the #1 player on the WTA to win 2/3 majors but it is great on the ATP that the #1 player also won 2/3 majors. The above highlighted just wreaks of his chauvinistic views because it is only in his mind that the women were just a footnote to the men.:unsure: Both finals were uneventful straight set wins so I don't know what he is talking about. Yea, so there was a boring ace-fest 1st round match that went on for 3 days and the players didn't pass the 2nd round, how exciting.:rolleyes:

Anyway can someone explain the math to me why 33-6 record is a C but a 32-12 is a B.:help: All this :bs: is just more evidence that objective journalism in tennis is very, very, very scarce.:tape:


agreed

Bronx19
Jul 14th, 2010, 03:44 PM
Its amazing how crap Wozniacki is now. Its like the tour just worked out her game, and thats it, all over.

spencercarlos
Jul 14th, 2010, 04:03 PM
I guess he is speaking for himself and those who are upset that Serena remains at the top and their jubilant anticipations didn't live up to their expectations.:lol: When you have to make an exception for the #1 player in the world who played to her seeding that is a dead give away.:rolleyes:

What is "bad" for the #1 player on the WTA to win 2/3 majors but it is great on the ATP that the #1 player also won 2/3 majors. The above highlighted just wreaks of his chauvinistic views because it is only in his mind that the women were just a footnote to the men.:unsure: Both finals were uneventful straight set wins so I don't know what he is talking about. Yea, so there was a boring ace-fest 1st round match that went on for 3 days and the players didn't pass the 2nd round, how exciting.:rolleyes:

Anyway can someone explain the math to me why 33-6 record is a C but a 32-12 is a B.:help: All this :bs: is just more evidence that objective journalism in tennis is very, very, very scarce.:tape:
Jankovic B :rolleyes: Indeed ridiculous. Only a grand slam SF on a cake walk draw. Her actual grade C+.

Venus C indeed harsh, but B- probably because of her bad Wimbledon, and certainly she does not have a slam final in the past year.

Henin and Sharapova both at C :rolleyes: ??????

Henin is probably at B, thanks to her slam final IMO. She lost tough great matches against Kim and Stosur, in the rest of the big events this year Miami, Rg and Wimbledon, all three sets not so much shame on that.

Sharapova stands at C- probably? 1R at the Australian Open, although her loses in the remaining slams were competitive against Henin and Serena, she has not done much in Premier Tier (??) Is this year either..

Wozniacki D+? :rolleyes:. Ok she maybe a pusher and all of that but she certainly has done better than Sharapova at the Slams this year, and has a final in Indian Wells Premier Tier I whatever.. She also has a similar W/L record to Jankovic. She probably deserves a C.

Although i agree with the article´s first parragraphs.

CloudAtlas
Jul 14th, 2010, 04:03 PM
Well I wouldn't expect gradings to blindly follow the W:L record. I always assumed gradings like this are based on how they've actually done compared to their capability and what was expected from them at the start of the year.



It's also about quality of wins I would guess.

miffedmax
Jul 14th, 2010, 04:09 PM
Is that not a matter of opinion and perspective? .. I would imagine in Italy its the best tour year ever .. In France they are probably not too unhappy either with Rezais 1H performances. Australians up in the middle of the night to watch Stosur play tennis in Paris...

Just to mention of a few of the interesting and exciting tour stories this year. Tour = WTA. Slams are ITF. But thats not what we're talking here. Right?

So you cite the French Open to support your case that the WTA is in great shape, yet wonder if I'm the one who knows the difference between the WTA and the ITF? Okay...

Bicker's major point is valid. The established names have won hardly any titles, last year's up-and-comers haven't followed up on the success of '08 and '09, and the players who have won tournaments this year haven't put together any kind of consistency. A little excitement in Australia and Italy over one or two tournaments doesn't make for a successful "year."

And yes, to answer another poster, the WTA has been limping since '08 when the combined retirements of Clijsters and Henin, coupled with a rash of injuries (especially to Sharapova) really upset the whole apple cart. There are some big picture issues here--a lot of which have to do with scheduling and other issues--but the fact is an awful lot of us who have followed the game for a long time are less enthused now than we have been for a long time. This isn't Serena bashing, or bashing the WTA--which I personally have followed SINCE IT WAS FOUNDED--but concern that the sport needs to right itself if it wants to continue to thrive and grow in its richest markets (i.e. the US and Europe).

Some of this is a temporary aberration and will pass as new talent feeds into the system, and the growth of the game in Eastern Europe and Asia is a good thing. But saner schedules, smarter marketing (hello, their biggest sponsor just CUT funding) and some other smaller issues need to be cleaned up and addressed and pretending that's not the case isn't going to help.

Vlover
Jul 14th, 2010, 04:09 PM
All sport has injuries, but true. .. Puzzling really. WTA is a fabulous success story. Tennis is the biggest female sport (attendance, TV rating, endorsements) in the world. Its the only sport I can think of, where the women are near level with the men in before mentioned categories.

Yet we have (disgruntled?) journos and judging from this board, tennis 'fans', whom always want to talk about how poor the tour is doing and blah blah.
Naturally totally ignoring real life numbers. Probably just going by their own 'gut' ..
Time to wake up an smell the coffee. These people sound like bitter stock analysts who recommended a sell on a stock, which is flying. :lol:
You have them perfectly pegged! Totally going by the desires of their heart and because things are not going according to their wishes then the whole tour is shit. I say to them stick to the ATP if you don't like the WTA and leave us in peace to enjoy whatever "shit" there is. The men's final only had a .1 difference in ratings over the women therefore I don't see the big difference everyone is going crazy about. The way they are going on you would think the ratings for the women were .1:tape:

TennisFan66
Jul 14th, 2010, 04:17 PM
So you cite the French Open to support your case that the WTA is in great shape, yet wonder if I'm the one who knows the difference between the WTA and the ITF? Okay...

Bicker's major point is valid. The established names have won hardly any titles, last year's up-and-comers haven't followed up on the success of '08 and '09, and the players who have won tournaments this year haven't put together any kind of consistency. A little excitement in Australia and Italy over one or two tournaments doesn't make for a successful "year."
.

Hence why I asked if this was a discussion about WTA Vs ITF ... but should we leave this issue aside? ..

You may only see it as a 'little' excitement in Australia and Italy. It depends on your perspective .. Fine, YOU weren't excited. I understand that, but it doesn't rule out other people were. Is that difficult to respect? .. As for Bickers expectations arent met. ... Hmmm so what? .. He is not the final judge and jury here. People who spend their real life cash in the real world buying tickets, watching matches on TV, tennis fans following players are.

If you look at real life numbers (attendance, TV ratings, endorsements), WTA is a great success story.

miffedmax
Jul 14th, 2010, 04:20 PM
This year's Wimby ratings in the US were greatly impacted by the World Cup. Last year, the women had a 2.7 and the men had a 4.2, and as I understand it the US is more WTA friendly than the rest of the world where ATP matches outdraw the WTA by a wider margin. Again, I like both, but US ratings are not the only ones out there.

terjw
Jul 14th, 2010, 04:26 PM
Bullshit.

Bondarenko, Alona (UKR) 30 L 6-2 6-3
Zvonareva, Vera (RUS) 14 L 6-3 6-2
Sevastova, Anastasija (LAT) 72 L 5-7 6-4 6-4
Stosur, Samantha (AUS) 10 L 6-1 7-6(9)
Hantuchova, Daniela (SVK) 24 L 1-6 6-3 6-3
Hantuchova, Daniela (SVK) 23 L 7-6(2) 7-5
Henin, Justine (BEL) 24 L 3-6 7-6(4) 6-3
Martinez Sanchez, Maria Jose (ESP) 26 L 7-6(5) 7-5 .
Rezai, Aravane (FRA) 24 L 7-5 6-4
Stosur, Samantha (AUS) 7 L 6-1 6-2

So? Did you actually read my post or just go into blaa blaa mode? If the grading is compared to what is expected (which I'd expect) - is there any relevance to just listing her losses apart from providing evidence why she obviously cannot be higher than a B.

On the plus side - beating Venus and Serena in the same tournament, just making FO SF, winning IW, going deep in the big clay court tournamenta, and reaching #2 is just so way above what would be expected from the dreadful 2009 season. JJ was barely in the top 10 at the end of 2009 and the expectation was she'd slip outside it.

For Venus - getting knocked out of Wimbledon in the QF against Pironkova is a huge underachievement compared to what was expected. Anything less than winner or runner up to Serena is dreadful by her standards. That coupled with the really bad surprise losses against Kim, Jelena, Rezai, Pironkova. Hence only the C.

Is that so hard to understand that the grading is not just absolutes or selectively only Jelena's losses - but also against expectations?

TennisFan66
Jul 14th, 2010, 04:26 PM
This year's Wimby ratings in the US were greatly impacted by the World Cup. Last year, the women had a 2.7 and the men had a 4.2, and as I understand it the US is more WTA friendly than the rest of the world where ATP matches outdraw the WTA by a wider margin. Again, I like both, but US ratings are not the only ones out there.


SW19 TV ratings were discussed in a previous thread a few weeks ago. Given the competition from the WC in football, which as we know is THE largest TV/sporting event, tennis - incl the womens side - did very well ..

brickhousesupporter
Jul 14th, 2010, 04:47 PM
Anyway can someone explain the math to me why 33-6 record is a C but a 32-12 is a B.:help: All this :bs: is just more evidence that objective journalism in tennis is very, very, very scarce.:tape:

Jankovic B :rolleyes: Indeed ridiculous. Only a grand slam SF on a cake walk draw. Her actual grade C+.

Venus C indeed harsh, but B- probably because of her bad Wimbledon, and certainly she does not have a slam final in the past year.

This post show why Jankovic is given such a high grade. Compared to last year, Jankovic has been on a tear. She defended all her points so far and has added a significant amount of points this year.
I calculated this for another thread but figured it might be of greater interest.

Here are the points defended by Top 20 so far this season. Points are those from the beginning of the season to Wimbledon (including Wimbledon). The percentages in red are for those players who have earned fewer points this year compared to last year (failed to defend all points earned).

http://img59.imageshack.us/img59/9726/cccxc.jpg (http://img59.imageshack.us/i/cccxc.jpg/)

SAFINA has defended 8.5% of her points from 2009. 6601 points in 11 events in 2009, 562 points in 7 events in 2010...OUCH...

miffedmax
Jul 14th, 2010, 04:47 PM
Hence why I asked if this was a discussion about WTA Vs ITF ... but should we leave this issue aside? ..

You may only see it as a 'little' excitement in Australia and Italy. It depends on your perspective .. Fine, YOU weren't excited. I understand that, but it doesn't rule out other people were. Is that difficult to respect? .. As for Bickers expectations arent met. ... Hmmm so what? .. He is not the final judge and jury here. People who spend their real life cash in the real world buying tickets, watching matches on TV, tennis fans following players are.

If you look at real life numbers (attendance, TV ratings, endorsements), WTA is a great success story.

It has been. But as I pointed out, they've already had their major sponsor cut back, they've made their attendance bounce by pairing up with more ATP events at nonslams and TV numbers are heading south in the US--Tennis Channel has been taking over a lot of coverage from ESPN, but it's not an encouraging sign that ESPN is willing to let them go without a fight. The numbers don't tell everything, and they're not as rosy as you'd like to pretend if you just look at the last couple of years.

What's more, while it may just be a few cranky journalists, and there have always been WTA bashers out there, the fact is they do help shape opinion, and there are more and more articles out there with this kind of attitude than there have been in the past. There will be a snowball effect, as more poor tennis begats more bad articles, and more people choose not to watch.

I've been following the WTA longer than most people on this forum have been alive, and yes, everyone's entitled to their perspective. But the bottom line is this last couple of years is as bad as I've seen from the ladies ever, and I truly believe the issue lies largely with the front office of the WTA, not with a bunch of young women who have busted their asses from the time they were little girls to be world-class athletes, and not with the pioneering women who built the WTA into the most successful women's sports organization on earth. My great fear is that this legacy and talent is being squandered by an incompetent, complacent bureaucracy that refuses to admit it has a problem and takes solace in puffery and faux-statistics while ignoring the fact the product they are putting on the court right now is not worthy of the players, the fans or a proud legacy.

Vlover
Jul 14th, 2010, 04:51 PM
This year's Wimby ratings in the US were greatly impacted by the World Cup. Last year, the women had a 2.7 and the men had a 4.2, and as I understand it the US is more WTA friendly than the rest of the world where ATP matches outdraw the WTA by a wider margin. Again, I like both, but US ratings are not the only ones out there.
Yes, I speak specifically to this Wimbledon from the US vantage point because that is what this article was based on. Obviously in a MALE dominated world where women are always PERCIEVED to be inferior to men in everything it is a given but why do they feel the need to insist on the perception even when there isn't any evidence to support the false perception.:tape:

brickhousesupporter
Jul 14th, 2010, 04:52 PM
And yes, to answer another poster, the WTA has been limping since '08 when the combined retirements of Clijsters and Henin, coupled with a rash of injuries (especially to Sharapova) really upset the whole apple cart. There are some big picture issues here--a lot of which have to do with scheduling and other issues--but the fact is an awful lot of us who have followed the game for a long time are less enthused now than we have been for a long time. This isn't Serena bashing, or bashing the WTA--which I personally have followed SINCE IT WAS FOUNDED--but concern that the sport needs to right itself if it wants to continue to thrive and grow in its richest markets (i.e. the US and Europe).


Max, I thought you would be happy. It is the best your girl has done since becoming a professional player. Won a large number of titles in those years and consistently did well in the slams. .......Are you saying the tour is bad, becaue she was able to do all those things?:confused:

BuTtErFrEnA
Jul 14th, 2010, 04:55 PM
Max, I thought you would be happy. It is the best your girl has done since becoming a professional player. Won a large number of titles in those years and consistently did well in the slams. .......Are you saying the tour is bad, becaue she was able to do all those things?:confused:

she lost a special part of her so he's never going to be happy

TennisFan66
Jul 14th, 2010, 05:08 PM
miffedmax,

personally I agree with you. WTA has some rules and regulations which could be better. Its naturally also important not to rest on the laurels.

My main objection against the socalled 'critics' are, they do not deal with the real world numbers. Its about THEIR perception and opinion.

We're entering USO and US Open series. As we know :). SW19 did rather well. Competition from football WC considering. TV records were broken in Italy, Australia during FO (due to WTA players). Sure sure. Its not the US, but it still counts. As for the US HC season, last year was a phenomenal success. Given the economic climate, even more impressive.

2009 US Open Experienced by More Fans Than Ever
(http://www.usopen.org/2009_us_open_experienced_by_more_fans_than_ever/)
The (US Open) Series has produced record attendance, TV viewership and live broadcast hours for the sport (http://www.pilotpentennis.com/TournamentInformation/)

We'll see what happens in 2010. I just personally have a hard time taking journos and grumpy fans (not talking about you :lol:) serious, when all they go by is their 'gut'. When the numbers are clearly up, I lean towards thinking those people are just simply grumpy and disgruntled because their faves aren't at the top of the game.

Earlier mentioned SW19 TV ratings thread. (http://www.tennisforum.com/showthread.php?t=414426)

Slutiana
Jul 14th, 2010, 05:16 PM
Well firstly a lot of what he says is right, IMO the only problem with this article was the comments on Serena as another poster brought up.

Just a question to the upset Venus fans, are you seriously satisfied with her year? I sure as hell am not. For someone of her ability and stature, a C+ grade for the year is spot on.

Putting TennisFan66 on ignore before I shove a fucking ball down his fucking throat.

HippityHop
Jul 14th, 2010, 08:02 PM
We know the ITF and the WTA are different organizations. But for some reason I was under the impression that most of the players who played ITF also played WTA. Am I wrong? :confused:

LUVMIRZA
Jul 14th, 2010, 08:09 PM
This guy is full of it. But as soon as I saw the name Bricker, I figured this would be a bad article. He gives Venus a C when she was as high as no. 2 (doesn't bother to mention it). She defended two titles, reached the finals of two others, reached quarters at Rome, 4th r at RG, etc. She's 33-6. Sure she should have won at least two other tourneys, had the opportunity, but...come on, dude. He doesn't even mention how boring Berdych in the final turned out to be. Thumbs down!

He gives Jelena a B and she's 32-12. Ridiculous.

I never think of this guy as a great tennis writer. He seems to be fulfilling his obligtion here, just wanting to be negative about the WTA.


Yeah Rankings does matter when it comes to Serena/Venus it seems:rolleyes:

miffedmax
Jul 14th, 2010, 08:47 PM
Yes, I speak specifically to this Wimbledon from the US vantage point because that is what this article was based on. Obviously in a MALE dominated world where women are always PERCIEVED to be inferior to men in everything it is a given but why do they feel the need to insist on the perception even when there isn't any evidence to support the false perception.:tape:

The evidence is there--even in the US--in a year when viewership was much higher, the men's final outdrew the women's final by a lot more than .1--it outdrew them by 50%. And that's been the pattern for several years now. This year was an anomaly.

miffedmax
Jul 14th, 2010, 08:57 PM
miffedmax,

personally I agree with you. WTA has some rules and regulations which could be better. Its naturally also important not to rest on the laurels.

My main objection against the socalled 'critics' are, they do not deal with the real world numbers. Its about THEIR perception and opinion.

We're entering USO and US Open series. As we know :). SW19 did rather well. Competition from football WC considering. TV records were broken in Italy, Australia during FO (due to WTA players). Sure sure. Its not the US, but it still counts. As for the US HC season, last year was a phenomenal success. Given the economic climate, even more impressive.

2009 US Open Experienced by More Fans Than Ever
(http://www.usopen.org/2009_us_open_experienced_by_more_fans_than_ever/)
The (US Open) Series has produced record attendance, TV viewership and live broadcast hours for the sport (http://www.pilotpentennis.com/TournamentInformation/)

We'll see what happens in 2010. I just personally have a hard time taking journos and grumpy fans (not talking about you :lol:) serious, when all they go by is their 'gut'. When the numbers are clearly up, I lean towards thinking those people are just simply grumpy and disgruntled because their faves aren't at the top of the game.

Earlier mentioned SW19 TV ratings thread. (http://www.tennisforum.com/showthread.php?t=414426)

Yes, but last year the men significantly outdrew the women as I already pointed out, and some of those US Open figures were because of the increased number of joint events--which might be a smart short-term move for the WTA, and maybe a good one in the long-run. I'm also inclined to take attendance figures with a grain of salt--not just from the WTA, but from any sporting event. I've been to too many football, baseball, soccer and yes, even tennis matches where the announced crowds and the actual number of people there had no bearing on reality--and no, I don't think 10,000 people all went to the bathroom at the same time.

Yes, there are plenty of dickhead, misogynist journalists out there who hate on the WTA full-time, but I really don't think the WTA's numbers hold up under scrutiny (nor do the NFLs, or MLBs, or NBAs, or MLS's for that matter). But fine, we'll agree to disagree on certain issues, but agree we both love WTA tennis and want it to succeed--you can be a :cheer: and use positive reinforcement and I'll be a :smash: who uses negative reinforcement. Sometimes it takes both!

tonybotz
Jul 14th, 2010, 10:26 PM
pretty accurate so far. serena is the best part time player ever. its just a major sign of disrespect/arrogance/entitlement thats keeping her from dominating the tour proper - to which the critics would say "where's the parity?!" until we get a good crop of WINNERS out there the critics will continue to be proven right.

Mightymirza
Jul 14th, 2010, 10:35 PM
Stosur should get an A :shrug: