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View Full Version : Doe the WTA tour need a "masters" series?


bobito
Jul 6th, 2011, 08:50 PM
Watching the WTA and ATP tours this year, I was struck by the lack of rivalries at the top of the women's game. There was a bit of a contest at the start of the year for the #1 ranking between Wozniacki and Clijsters but it took place without them playing each other.

Over the last 12 months:
Matches between two top 4 players on ATP tour - 30
Matches between two top 4 players on WTA tour - 7

ATP #1 Novak Djokovic has played 18 matches against a top 4 opponent in that time, WTA #1 Caroline Wozniaki has played only 4.

Wozniacki has won 10 tournaments over the past year but only beaten a top 4 opponent in one of them. Djokovic has won 9 tournaments, beating top 4 opponents in 7 of them and two top 4 opponents twice.

Part of this is obviously down to the presence of four extremely good players on the ATP tour but I can't help feeling that the structure of the two tours plays a part.

Perhaps the WTA should create something akin to the ATP Masters series, comprised of the current Premier Mandatory and Premier 5 tournaments. The ranking could be taken from their best 8 results from these 9 events, the 4 slams, and their best 5 other results (including Tour Finals if they qualify). I can see 3 advantages:

1. Top players would play each other more often.
2. The rankings would more accurately reflect how players perform against the best opposition.
3. The WTA tour would have a series of marquee tournaments for fans to focus their attention on.

Gryffin
Jul 6th, 2011, 08:57 PM
YAY! And lets call it the Mistress Series :cheer: and Madame Laura Robson can be the head mistress :oh:

Patrick345
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:00 PM
They need a clearer system for casual fans. Everboy knows it is Slams, Masters and then the rest on the ATP Tour events. That is simple. WTA has Premier Mandatories, Premier 5, Premier events. If you called them gold, silver and bronze events every child would know the order and importance.

goldenlox
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:04 PM
The whole idea of the roadmap was to get the best players in the same tournaments.
Its happening. But there is a lot of depth.
AO final - Kim-Li
IW final - Caro-Marion
Miami Vika-Maria
Madrid Petra-Vika
FO Li-Fran
Wimbledon Petra-Maria

8 players over 6 finals of majors & mandatories

Stonerpova
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:05 PM
I think they should at least change the names. I liked the "Tier" naming system more. It made those tournies sound more important. Maybe then Serena would give a shit about non-slam events :lol:

duhcity
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:06 PM
The Masters and PremierM and Premier5 tournaments are essentially the same. It's the commitment of the top players that is a problem. Somehow the top 4 men are all able to play 18-22 tournaments a year, playing high quality tennis and avoiding injury. If the WS/Kim/whoever else don't care about playing Indian Wells or Rome and Madrid when they're called Premier Mandatory, they won't care when it's called a Masters tournament.

Ferg
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:09 PM
I always wonder why they have a big 4 in the mens. :angel: Its clearly a big 3.


Anyways, Id be in favour of it. The Masters in the men seem to carry more signifigance than the Premier Mandatorys than the women for whatever reason... Maybe because, as Patrick said, there is a clear difference in the different levels of tournaments in the ATP.

backhandsmash
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:11 PM
Do like the men:

250 - Internationals

500 - Premiers

1000 - Premier 5's and Premier Mandatories

Ryusuke Tenma
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:12 PM
I always wonder why they have a big 4 in the mens. :angel: Its clearly a big 3.
It's clearly big three. What has Federer done this year that Murray hasn't? Both have slam finals, both have slam semi-finals (Andy has one more semi-final than Federer). Andy had a better clay season and grass season than Federer too. So, why should Federer be part of the big three and not Murray? At this current moment in time, there are the top four, then there are Ferrer and Soderling and then there is the rest.

As for the men's tour, they have it simpler than the women's tour. The women should have 250, 500, masters and slams. That way, it is easier and more simpler, like the men's tour. Easy and simple.

Ferg
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:14 PM
16>10>3>0

C. Drone
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:15 PM
whatever name do you call them
Master Series = Premier Mandatory + Premier 5

its not WTA's fault such players do not even care or injured.

bobito
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:18 PM
The Masters and PremierM and Premier5 tournaments are essentially the same. It's the commitment of the top players that is a problem. Somehow the top 4 men are all able to play 18-22 tournaments a year, playing high quality tennis and avoiding injury. If the WS/Kim/whoever else don't care about playing Indian Wells or Rome and Madrid when they're called Premier Mandatory, they won't care when it's called a Masters tournament.

One significant difference. 8 of the 9 Masters events must count towards a player's ranking. Only 2 of the 5 Premier 5 events have to count, allowing players to pick and choose their best results. With less margin for error, the Masters events take on a greater significance as every tournament counts.

When the Roadmap was unveiled it was widely interpreted as a stepping stone towards a Masters like structure. They might as well go the whole hog. As it is, it's neither one thing nor the other.

Jimmie48
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:20 PM
whatever name do you call them
Master Series = Premier Mandatory + Premier 5

its not WTA's fault such players do not even care or injured.

Kind of ironic that you guys bemoan the fact that the WTA top players "don't care" and yet the only top player who very much does care get's ridiculed nonstop for it.

You can't have it both ways...

Spring Pools
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:26 PM
They need a clearer system for casual fans. Everboy knows it is Slams, Masters and then the rest on the ATP Tour events. That is simple. WTA has Premier Mandatories, Premier 5, Premier events. If you called them gold, silver and bronze events every child would know the order and importance.

Or they could just bring back the easy to understand tier I II III and IV

C. Drone
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:27 PM
Kind of ironic that you guys bemoan the fact that the WTA top players "don't care" and yet the only top player who very much does care get's ridiculed nonstop for it.

You can't have it both ways...

yes, please compare Bastad to Madrid.
Thinking in black & white, shades of gray are meaningless, right?

leftyness
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:27 PM
The WTA asks less of it's players, but until we get a few players in the 20-22 age bracket who take the tour by the scruff of the neck for a few years, the women's game will continue to be wide open.

Sean.
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:48 PM
The only reason that there are more matches between top 4 players on the ATP is because the 'BIG 4' are leagues above the rest and consistently make the SFs of the events they enter, making the early stages of tournament boring!

The top WTA players do enter a lot of the same events, the WTA made steps to ensure it a few years back (the road map) - introducing Mandatory tournament for instance. It's not the tour's fault if their top players lose before the SFs.

18majors
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:51 PM
No.

C. Drone
Jul 6th, 2011, 09:57 PM
One significant difference. 8 of the 9 Masters events must count towards a player's ranking. Only 2 of the 5 Premier 5 events have to count, allowing players to pick and choose their best results. With less margin for error, the Masters events take on a greater significance as every tournament counts.

When the Roadmap was unveiled it was widely interpreted as a stepping stone towards a Masters like structure. They might as well go the whole hog. As it is, it's neither one thing nor the other.

But top10 players have to enter 4 of the 5 Premier 5 tournament. Commitment is mandatory for them.
So they are either injured (fake or not) and not playing or they are there just can't rule the field as ATP does. :shrug:

NedRise
Jul 6th, 2011, 11:57 PM
yes, please compare Bastad to Madrid.
Thinking in black & white, shades of gray are meaningless, right?

Or, let's compare Indian Wells and Beijing to Madrid.

And Prague to Bastad.

toxina90
Jul 7th, 2011, 12:02 AM
Banning the top 10 from MMs might help increase rivalries ;) :shrug:

sakya23
Jul 7th, 2011, 12:07 AM
I think the 9 tournaments should be mandatory, it will force the top players to play tournaments where all other top players. And I don't want to hear the excuse that the players aren't capable of playing these tournaments.

Australian Open
2 weeks off
Dubai
2 weeks off
IW
Miami
4 weeks off
Madrid
Rome
1 week off
FO
2 weeks off
Wimbledon
5 weeks off
Canada
Cincinnati
1 week off
US Open
2 weeks off
Tokyo
Beijing
2 weeks off
YEC

Thats 14 events. Of course they can play 2 or 3 Premier events. but thats up to them to find out what they wanna play. I would also only allow top ten players to play in 1 MM tournament PER Year.

Solitaire
Jul 7th, 2011, 12:54 AM
Or they could just bring back the easy to understand tier I II III and IV

So much this!

gc-spurs
Jul 7th, 2011, 01:12 AM
Thats 14 events. Of course they can play 2 or 3 Premier events. but thats up to them to find out what they wanna play. I would also only allow top ten players to play in 1 MM tournament PER Year.

I disagree. That would suck for some of the MM tournaments. It would make getting marquee names to sell tickets pretty hard. Auckland sold so well because of Sharapova (:oh:) even though she wasn't top 10 then, but it would suck if like tournaments couldn't reel in some names because they were only allowed 1/yr.

Also, there's home country MMs that players are strongly attached to for obvious reasons, and it helps promote tennis in the country. At the moment I can only think of that affecting Caro in the top 10, but in future there will be more. So what if a top 10 player wanted to play Birmingham because they didn't want to play the week before Wimbledon and then wanted to play a home tournament MM or needed more matches after injury/early losses?

!VamosRafa!
Jul 7th, 2011, 01:25 AM
Definitely!
I think the Tier format was the best.

KoOlMaNsEaN
Jul 7th, 2011, 03:41 AM
I never understood why they wanted to complicate things by making premier mandatory,5s and just plain premiers then internationals.

The Tier system worked well, they just needed to make the Tier I's mandatory like they make the men's masters series mandatory.

Volcana
Jul 7th, 2011, 04:55 AM
Bad idea. IN the ATP, the most popular players, the highest ranked players, and the players winning the slams are all the same players, more or less.

In the WTA, the most popular players the highest ranked players, and the players winning the slams are all different players.

The ATP business model won't work.

How about this? Incentivize appearance money. Let Beijing PAY Serena Williams an extra million, if she makes the final. For that matter, let them promise Na Li her own tennis academy. IF she makes the final.


You want the best to play the best. PAY THEM to play the best. The way it is now, beating a player who;s never won a tournament pays the same as beating Serena. Not much incentive to play Serena, is it?

Alejandrawrrr
Jul 7th, 2011, 07:57 AM
I think the 9 tournaments should be mandatory, it will force the top players to play tournaments where all other top players. And I don't want to hear the excuse that the players aren't capable of playing these tournaments.

Australian Open
2 weeks off
Dubai
2 weeks off
IW
Miami
4 weeks off
Madrid
Rome
1 week off
FO
2 weeks off
Wimbledon
5 weeks off
Canada
Cincinnati
1 week off
US Open
2 weeks off
Tokyo
Beijing
2 weeks off
YEC

Thats 14 events. Of course they can play 2 or 3 Premier events. but thats up to them to find out what they wanna play. I would also only allow top ten players to play in 1 MM tournament PER Year.

I'm not positive where I stand on the issue, but I do find this absolutely doable. Maybe allow two MMs.