View Full Version : WTA SENIOR TOUR

Feb 1st, 2002, 02:28 PM
Just Imagine if that happened, that would be so cool, I know that they have family and work commitments, but it would be so cool to see steffi and naritolva, huber, zvera, tauziet, evert battle it out again.

Though i dont see this happening but instead u wouldnt just get the 10 or 15 years of one player u would get another 10 years of watching. If golf can do it then why cant tennis.

Sure the prizemoney wouldnt exactly be better then normal, but it would be just as fun watching the real greats of the tennis game.

Feb 1st, 2002, 02:50 PM
They did have the Womens Legends tour which ran for a number of years but it just petered out in the last couple of years. They had many of the greats playing including Navratilova, Evert, Goolagong, Austin, Wade, Durr, Richey, Stove, Morozova etc. I have a video tape of one of the early ones held in Richmond, Virginia in 1995. Evert beat Navratilova in a best of 3 T/B match.

It's a shame it wasn't very well supported. At one stage I worked with a few people to get them to all play a senior tournament in Australia. I actually got the green light from a number of players - many of whom said they would play for free or just for a trophy!!!! - but we couldn't get the sponsorship money together to cover all the expenses.

Feb 1st, 2002, 02:55 PM

I would have LOVED for them to have played in Australia...having only followed tennis since 1996, i haven't seen any of these players play - EVER!!!

So I would pay ANYTHING to see them play live now here in Australia....i would even travel to another city to watch it! LOL - But would prefer they play in Sydney! ;) ;)

It's a brilliant idea!! PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE try to get them to come to Australia!!! PLEASE!!!!

Feb 1st, 2002, 03:03 PM
Didint they have the legendary doubles or soemthing but those players wernt very well know./ It would be so cool for the Senior Sanex Wta tour. I figure it might be more popular then normal

Feb 1st, 2002, 05:04 PM
They do have Legends Doubles events at Wimbledon, French, USO and Aussie Open but they are reduced to a very select invitational field and some of it is a joke. Like the Aussie Open Legends features players some people have barely heard of! LOL.

I don't know if you recall Judy Dalton (nee Tegart)? Wimbledon Finalist in 68. I was working with her trying to generate interest for the former great women to play in Australia. And it wasn't from a lack of interest from the players - all of them that I spoke with were VERY KEEN to come and play - esp Wade, Richey, Durr, Stove, Goolagong, Casals who were the players I was in contact with- you see, most of them still have the same competitive juices. But the sad thing is we just couldn't raise enough corporate interest to sponsor such an event. They needed several hundred thousand and it the idea fell into the scrap heap. I can't see it happening now, esp with the Legends tour folding in what should be the world's biggest market - USA. It is a shame. I would love to see them all playing together again, but in a serious event, not just a promo tour which is what the Legends tour became. Oh well, we can dream.......

Feb 1st, 2002, 06:51 PM
who the hell's 'naritolva'? :confused:

N - A - V - R - A - T - I - L - O - V - A is how you spell it.

Feb 2nd, 2002, 04:36 AM
I think i no how to spell it. Im one of those people that dont generally care about spelling mistakes. soa slong as u know what i mean then u should have no problems with it

Feb 2nd, 2002, 05:26 AM
I think a Senior Mixed Doubles tour would be the way forward, rather than singles matches.

The mens senior tour has been struggling recently, so if they combined the two it might work better.

Who wouldn't pay to see John MacEnroe & Natasha Zvereva Vs Steffi Graf & Boris Becker for example?

Feb 2nd, 2002, 05:35 AM
Anke Huber is what, 26?

If you are going to have a senior tour, there has to be something "senior" about the players. I think the Men have to be over 35, but I'm not positive. I think 30 would be a good cutoff for the Women. Anke and DVR retired fairly healthy anyway, because they needed some time for things other than tennis. By the time they are 30, that may change.

Feb 2nd, 2002, 05:37 AM
The thing is that I doubt many will play if it happen.

I can see Jana, Martina etc. play. But people like Anke and Steffi will not play coz their reason of retiring is because they play too much. So I think if we have some really nice name coming in playing then I am sure there is a market. I mean why don't we just make a cutoff for players who has retired, no restriction on age?

Feb 2nd, 2002, 05:45 AM
Who wouldn't pay to see John MacEnroe & Natasha Zvereva Vs Steffi Graf & Boris Becker for example?

I'm sure there are a lot of people who wouldn't pay to see a bunch of old players. That's why the men's senior tour is just about down the tubes. In fact, it's been reduced by half for this year. People just don't want to see it.

I remember that women's legends tour. It generated almost zero interest even though both Evert and Navratilova played. Chrissy had her babies to take care of so she could only play select tournaments and she was the star. At that time not many Americans really wanted to see Martina and sponsors weren't going to sponsor a tour with her as the star. (I emphasize: at that time .)

It would be difficult to bring it back now even in a mixed-doubles form. Steffi definitely won't play and who else is there? I'm talking about for the masses, not just tennis fans who will watch anybody. It just won't work. As someone said, sponsorship is difficult to get even when the women will play for practically nothing.

Feb 2nd, 2002, 10:16 AM
The senior women's Legends Tour lasted from 1995 till 1998. Virginia Slims was the sponsor and they declined to renew the sponsorship after the 1998 season. Basically, it was turning into a PR nightmare for Virginia Slims. At a number of events, anti-smoking activists picketed the tournament and shouted anti-smoking slogans etc.

The tour did well, especially in the first two years. They were always well-received the "first time" they came to a city and I feel they could have continued had they been more dynamic and opted to try playing in different cities. But easier said than done. They were trying to get Gaby to join them in 1998, but after the sponsorship fell through, there wasn't any hope.

Today, there are a 2 Legends events held annually. A mixed doubles tournament in Cincinnati and a womens doubles tournament in Indianapolis. Jana Novotna, Lori McNeil & Mary Joe Fernandez have joined the senior ladies along with 90s-retirees - Kathy Rinaldi-Stunkel, Carling Basset-Seguso, Brenda Schultz-McCarthy etc.

Some of the Legends who played the first few years have chosen not to play anymore. Chris Evert stopped playing after 1998. Now, she only plays at her charity event. Pam Shriver has been unable to serve overhead after her 1999 shoulder surgery. Billie Jean King has stopped playing too b/c of her shoulder surgery. Evonne also stopped playing after 1998. And it appears so have Frankie Dur & Olga Morozova.

The oldest players who still play are Rosie Casals & Virginia Wade. Of course, there's still also Ilana Kloss, Wendy Turnbull, Zina Garrison, Tracy (who didn't play last year b/c of the birth of her son) & Martina. Hana played sparingly on the Legends Tour and played in Chris' charity event last year after the birth of twins. Maybe she will join them this year? But since Jana also plays...

Brian Stewart
Feb 6th, 2002, 10:24 PM
One of the things I've suggested a few times was running the women's senior tour concurrently with the WTA tour. Not at the big events. The top Tiers (I and II) are doing well, and the seniors would get lost in the shuffle. But perhaps holding a senior event in conjunction with various lower-tier events would work out. There could be a small field, 16 or perhaps even 8 singles players, culled from the area, with all of them playing doubles too. This could provide extra drawing power for lower-tier WTA events, while establishing a legit tour for senior players. Plus, the senior matches could fill in the program where needed, perhaps as the late evening match after one main tour singles match, with another match during the day session. That way, the evening session ticket buyers get a full slate of tennis without keeping main draw players up until the wee hours and having to play the next day.

Just imagine the likes of Sukova, Wiesner, the retired Maleevas, Kohde-Kilsch, etc., playing in their regions. That would draw a few more folks than a plain Tier IV or V, and the tournament itself would draw more fans than just a seniors event. The whole would be greater than the sum of the parts.

Feb 6th, 2002, 10:30 PM
I'd love to see a seniors tour and get to see the 'oldies' playing again it'd be great!

Doris Loeffel
Feb 6th, 2002, 10:46 PM
I always was surprised why there were only mens over 35 / 45 playing at the slams but no sight of the women.

Had no clue about the legends tour for the women. Too bad they couldn't find an other sponsor. Thanks Zummi for the info about it. Btw good to see you again too!!

I second Brians idea about "upgrading" the lover Tier events with fromer players. Couse there are a lot of younger ones around (or a bit older ones who havend payed attention to tennis in their early years like me) who have never seen playing the likes of Evert, Navratilova etc...