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View Full Version : Sarasota IS a Tier IV (Cheap tickets)


Volcana
Mar 31st, 2003, 12:30 PM
The following is an exerpt from Bob Larson's Women's Look Forward

If Casablanca has always been weaker than its tier, Sarasota has always been absurdly stronger. Even though it's a Tier IV, the field is usually toward the upper end of the Tier III scale. It's not hard to guess why: It's close to Miami, it's close to the players' homes, it's a chance to warm up on green clay for Charleston and Amelia Island.

How strong? Strong enough that there are players in qualifying who will be getting direct entry into Charleston and Amelia Island -- players such as Jill Craybas, Lina Krasnoroutskaya, and Stephanie Foretz. Players with big results at Miami, such as Alicia Molik (not likely to be a threat on clay, though) and Marion Bartoli and Marlene Weingartner (and she could be a clay threat). Nadia Petrova is a former Top 30 player who is stuck in qualifying. Mirjana Lucic made the qualifying draw only after several players pulled out. Lilia Osterloh needed a wildcard into qualifying, and got it only because another wildcard withdrew. It really does look like the qualifying for a Tier II, not a Tier IV.

Strong enough that Paola Suarez, one of the best clay players in the field, is unseeded and opens against Jelena Dokic. Also unseeded is Iva Majoli. And Tamarine Tanasugarn (thought that's only reasonable on clay). And Daja Bedanova. And Mary Pierce. And Elena Likhovtseva. And Roland Garros semifinalist Clarisa Fernandez. And -- drumroll, please -- Conchita Martinez. On clay. This is a Tier IV, and if features eight Top 25 players!

Or try it another way: The #1 seed at Sarasota qualifying is Jill Craybas, #58 as of last week. The #1 seed in the main draw at Casablanca is Virginie Razzano, #57 last week. In other words, not one player at Casablanca would have earned direct entry into Sarasota (assuming this week's rankings were used -- there might be one or two who would have qualified based on the rankings at the time entries closed, e.g. Henrieta Nagyova).

starr
Mar 31st, 2003, 12:33 PM
Hey, I've heard from someone who went there last year that Sarasota is a real good time.

King Aaron
Mar 31st, 2003, 01:37 PM
But I've also heard it's badly organized.

Meesh
Mar 31st, 2003, 01:59 PM
It's changed a lot from last year! It's going to improve each year.
This year they built a new stadium.
Instead of Port - o - lets from last year they have a van set up w/ bathrooms in there. It's kind of like a glorified port - o - potty but w/ sinks , towels etc...

I think the players enjoy it because they can walk to their lodging and Els Callens likes it cause it has a golf course on property! ;)

They have a ton of sponsors and each one came back this year! That's
a good sign.
Plus the people on the advisory board are Nick Boleteri, Billy Jean King, Patrick McEnroe and I can't think of the others. :worship:
I think they have listened to our complaints and now we are getting live
scores on the quarter hour.

Last year I paid 236.00 for the whole weekend and was second row on
seats that you would see at a high school field. I'm surprised I didn't
get splinters on my ass! This year it's improved seating! I'm saving up my money for a three week trip in June and I just couldn't afford to go this year.. only qualies..

King Aaron
Mar 31st, 2003, 03:11 PM
It's changed a lot from last year! It's going to improve each year.
This year they built a new stadium.
Instead of Port - o - lets from last year they have a van set up w/ bathrooms in there. It's kind of like a glorified port - o - potty but w/ sinks , towels etc...

I think the players enjoy it because they can walk to their lodging and Els Callens likes it cause it has a golf course on property! ;)

They have a ton of sponsors and each one came back this year! That's
a good sign.
Plus the people on the advisory board are Nick Boleteri, Billy Jean King, Patrick McEnroe and I can't think of the others. :worship:
I think they have listened to our complaints and now we are getting live
scores on the quarter hour.

Last year I paid 236.00 for the whole weekend and was second row on
seats that you would see at a high school field. I'm surprised I didn't
get splinters on my ass! This year it's improved seating! I'm saving up my money for a three week trip in June and I just couldn't afford to go this year.. only qualies..
Lol at the splinters in on my ass comment.
Do you think they can find more sponsors to upgrade it to a Tier III maybe?

Volcana
Mar 31st, 2003, 03:58 PM
The difference between a Tier III and a Tier IV is $30,000. I doubt its strictly money that keeps them a Tier IV. Likely its facilities, an issue it sounds like they are addressing.

Dava
Mar 31st, 2003, 04:21 PM
Look I would kill to go to Sarasota it looks like a great tour.

Shooter
Apr 1st, 2003, 02:05 AM
I attended the qualies and first round of Sarasota last year. You could tell they were sort of learning on the fly about how to better run the tournament. But it had no impact on my enjoyment of the event. It was a lot of fun. The only real criticism I had of the facility was that some of the bleachers around the stadium were not safe. The planks that you walk on in some areas were too narrow. Saw several senior citizens slip off those planks and take some nasty falls. Hopefully they've rectified that situation. But overall it was run well enough for me to enjoy it. I didn't see any players with any major complaints either.

BUT - what about next year? I just read that the Nasdaq and Pacific Life tourneys will be held a week later next year (for better t.v. exposure). Where would that leave Sarasota? They can't hold it before Pacific Life. It's a clay court event as are Charleston and Amelia Island. Is this the last year for Sarasota (some said 2001 was the last year)?

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