Belgium won´t show up with Clijsters and Henin, the players that made possible this nation reaches the finals. USA is unkown with whom they are about to come, but the 5 big names of this nation are injured, unwilling to come or unkown if they are about to return this year. So only France and Russia are playing with their best teams but unfortunately facing each other in the opening match already.
My idea for FedCup in the next years would be bringing the best 4 teams (this year the best 4 teams are in the finals ranking-wise) together in a year-long-competition which would be 3 matches against each other in a "country-challenge"-wise contest of 3 matches and a doubles maybe. This would mean that the best teams play each other more often and they know about their opponents from day1 of a season and can create their schedules for their players so that they choose surface and home rights and so on so that every top players is keen on showing up in front of a home crowd and against top players from the other country.
The 2nd league should comprise an Asian one with Indonesia, Australia, Japan and China in it, same as an American one with Argentina, Canada ... and maybe 2 European 2nd leagues with teams of Switzerland, Austria, Spain, Germany, Hungary, Italy and so on. We would have 4 winners of the 2nd league matches and those should play for the winner of the whole 2nd league competition. This one could re-place the worst team of the "1st league competition" for the next year.
Oct 6th, 2003, 01:30 PM
The ITF should stick with one format, then give it full support.
Perhaps the final four site should be chosen ahead of time, at the start of the year. Or at least for 2004, which has significance as the 125th anniversary of women's tournament tennis. Since the first women's championships was the 1879 Irish Championships, next year's final four should be in Ireland. Promote it all year long as an anniversary of women's tennis, with traveling history exhibits at the major tournaments.
Oct 6th, 2003, 02:22 PM
if those players dont play the Fed Cup Finals they should be banned from the Olympics
and the ITF should make the format exactly like Davis Cup (over 2 days) all the way through.
not messing about to see who gets final and what-shit or whatever.
Oct 6th, 2003, 02:38 PM
I want Fed Cup format excatly like Davis Cup!
Oct 6th, 2003, 02:44 PM
I want the Davis Cup formula as well.
But would people come for just one doubles match on Saturday, f.e. ?
Oct 6th, 2003, 02:47 PM
like i said make it over 2 days.
Men need 3 days cos of 5 sets
Women play doubles as final match.
they could have doubles on the Saturday night, after 1st two singles.
Oct 6th, 2003, 02:57 PM
The men's format is needed indeed.
I can imagine how it's not really motivating to participate in this final round of the Fed Cup (let's not discuss the choice of site even) the fact is that after the regular season, you have to motivate 4 teams to show up, 3 of whom will return home empty handed, 3 of whom are playing 'away'. It isn't hard to see why quite a lot of players are not motivated...
At least for the Davis Cup Final if teams are equal in strenght, you could say there's a 50 % that actually showing up with your strongest team will bring you the title, and at least only 1 team has to be motivated to 'travel abroad' when they could enjoy some time off
Oct 7th, 2003, 03:13 PM
I liked the old knock-out format. It was simple, efficient and players only needed to commit for one week a year rather than many. It should be played indoors (you wouldn't want bad weather to bog up the schedule) a week after Wimbledon at a city with a 4-court indoor tennis stadium, to be determined the previous year and promoted to death. It would be a 32-draw with room for 4 qualifying and 2 wildcard nations. Qualifying would be a 16-draw, to be decided in the weekend leading up to tournament beginning on Monday. The Wildcards can be decided either by play-offs, tournament directors' discretion, or by an 'under-represented nations' clause, whatever works for the event.
If it's going to be like the Davis Cup (making the women seem more dependent on the men for ideas ;)), then have a 16-nation world group - First round on the weekend after Miami, Quarter-Finals the weekend after Wimbledon, Semi-Finals on the weekend after the US Open, and the Grand Final on the weekend after the Tour Championships - just like the men. Matches should be No. 1 singles and No. 2 singles on the Saturday, with Doubles, followed by the reverse singles on Sunday. Make the doubles count for something rather than an afterthought, like it is now. Once again, just like the men. ;)
Oct 7th, 2003, 03:25 PM
Here's another format: Commitment once a year. Top 8 nations play in the same city in two round-robin groups. The bottom two nations - the last in each group - get relegated into World Group 2, and the Top 2 finishers in World Group 2 are bumped up to the main World Group, and so on and so on down the Groups - So if 56 nations are involved, there could be 7 cities in Fed Cup action at the one time. Because the nations for the Groups will be decided by the end of the week, cities for venues could be determined in advance.
USA, Slovak Republic, France, Slovenia
Belgium, Russia, Japan, Italy
WORLD GROUP 2
Sweden, Romania, Germany, Austria
Hungary, Canada, Australia, Switzerland
If Slovenia and Japan finish at the bottom of World Group, they could replace Germany and Switzerland in World Group 2, who would then go up to World Group. The bottom 2 nations in World Group 2 go down to World Group 3 and so on.
Good or bad idea? I actually came up with this about 8 years ago as an alternative for the knock-out format.
Does any of that make sense?
Oct 7th, 2003, 04:29 PM
here's what would really make it more of a notable event