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  Topic Review (Newest First)
Jan 12th, 2017 10:46 AM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Sydney International searching for indoor facility to ensure weather can no longer ruin future events

Jamie Pandaram, The Daily Telegraph
January 12, 2017 7:21pm

THE tide has finally turned, with the appeal of the Sydney International increasing after years of steady decline.

But while ticket sales are up 25 per cent on last year - some of which can be attributed to cheaper prices - tournament boss Alistair MacDonald is determined to ensure that weather can no longer ruin future events.

In previous years, rain has persistently delayed matches and led to poor turnouts, while this week intense heat prevented many from attending on Wednesday when the temperature soared to 41 degrees.

A NSW government is exploring a feasibility study to consider the best way to enhance the tournament; either move it to a multipurpose built facility near Sydney Harbour, or put a roof on Ken Rosewall Arena at the Sydney Olympic Park Tennis Centre.

“We really need a multipurpose indoor venue moving forward, you saw on Wednesday with the heat, it’s just not the rain anymore,” MacDonald said.

“What can you put the increase down to? We changed our ticket pricing, targeted families earlier in the week, we’ve added a lot more content in and around the event.

“And even though we had the hot day we’ve had better weather than last year.

“Moving forward we’ve just got to keep improving things. We’ve upgraded this venue, we’ve upgraded around the ground, but ultimately if we want to make a seismic shift in ticket numbers, the elements are what put us most at risk now.

“The government want to do a feasibility study on a multipurpose venue, we’ll be in the mix hopefully talking about how that can work for tennis.

“We continue to invest in this place [Olympic Park] at the moment, we’d love to get some shade structure over at least the second court, we’re now broadcasting in five courts so there’s a lot of pressure on the event.

“And being a week before the Australian Open it also puts a lot of pressure on the players when we have to stop play or there’s really strong heat.”

If the government decides a roof on Ken Rosewall is the best outcome, that could realistically be established by the 2018 tournament.

MacDonald confirmed that two indoor courts will be built at the centre following this tournament so if it rains at future tournaments players can at least practice without getting drenched.

And while the Sydney International will always struggle to attract the cream of the crop in men’s tennis given the packed schedule and proximity to the Australian Open, this year’s tournament was greatly helped by the presence of world No.1 female Angelique Kerber.

American Serena Williams has long-preferred to warm up in New Zealand before the Australian Open, but with Kerber among six of the top 10 ranked women in the world playing in Sydney this week crowds have flocked.

“We do have the strongest cut-off in the world for a WTA event, you can’t predict whether Kerber’s going to win or not but the women’s field is so strong,” MacDonald said.

“Having the only top 10 male player in Dominic Thiem has been good for us, and the legends match with Lleyton Hewitt and Mark Philippoussis [on Saturday], we’ve got to do these things.

“But the main thing is we’ve started to turn [ticket sales] a little bit and it will be interesting to see what we can do next year.

“The ticket sales were declining and we’re going to be up this year, with two days still to go, that’s really positive.”

No Cookies | Gold Coast Bulletin
Jan 9th, 2017 11:08 AM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Thought it's probably worth moving discussion of the Sydney Olympic Park Tennis Centre facilities to this thread.

The NSW Government has a $1.6 billion sporting stadia infrastructure fund, of which $300 million will be spent on Pirtek Stadium in Parramatta and $700 million on ANZ Stadium at Sydney Olympic Park.

$600 million of the fund remains - some is likely to go to a refurbishment of Allianz Stadium at Moore Park, and the rest (up to $250 million) to a new multi-purpose venue in a location yet to be confirmed.

Multiple Sydney Morning Herald articles (see links below) have highlighted the cost-efficiency of roofing Ken Rosewall Arena and upgrading the stadium to become a multi-purpose venue. Initial cost estimates put the upgrade at $50 million, considerably less than a new multi-purpose venue elsewhere in the city.

Some of this money could be invested in a permanent Show Court 1 at Sydney Olympic Park Tennis Centre, and even the next phase of the SCG upgrade.

There's no doubt Tennis Australia also needs to do more to stimulate interest in tennis in Sydney than put on a half-arsed Fast4 tennis event. Sydney and NSW in general are the biggest city and state sporting markets in the country and it's a pretty big shame that this state has not produced top 20 level men's or women's player since Todd Woodbridge (career high of No.19 in 1997) and Jelena Dokic (career high of No.4 in 2002 albeit playing for then-Yugoslavia).

Sydney Olympic Park upgrade would deliver new home for elite women's sport

Sydney Olympic Park Authority begins plans to put $50 million roof on Ken Rosewall Arena

Baird government seeks location for new indoor sports arena
Jan 8th, 2017 08:47 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

No Cookies | Herald Sun

Great to hear update on Dokic. Pity Channel 7 didnt sign her.
Jan 2nd, 2017 12:41 AM
Avada Kedavra!
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Originally Posted by Territory View Post
Nope.. I assume the bitching got out of control and mods are cleaning it up

At least we have player threads... I just posted in Arina's thread as she's on the verge of qualifying!
I think it has something do with the forum crash which happened yesterday?

We can create a BU thread until its fixed?
Jan 2nd, 2017 12:39 AM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

^ No I can't. It says who has posted last, but the last posts I can read are those from the weird ass Sam Stosur fan discussion posts.

Thanks for posting loulou. Been a long time fan of Kerryn's. I'm glad she has spoken out, even if it means we won't be hearing her on TV
Jan 2nd, 2017 12:37 AM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Originally Posted by Avada Kedavra! View Post
Can anyone see the posts on the other thread? The 2017 summer one?
Nope.. I assume the bitching got out of control and mods are cleaning it up

At least we have player threads... I just posted in Arina's thread as she's on the verge of qualifying!
Jan 2nd, 2017 12:35 AM
Avada Kedavra!
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Can anyone see the posts on the other thread? The 2017 summer one?
Jan 2nd, 2017 12:19 AM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Thanks for posting @louloubelle ... sounds grim
Jan 1st, 2017 10:26 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

^ Unfortunately we wont be hearing Kerryn's commentary this Summer. TA's-way or the highway!
Jan 1st, 2017 10:24 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Former board member Kerryn Pratt accuses Tennis Australia officials of victimisation

January 1, 201710:37pm

Kerryn Pratt (L) says she has been victimised for speaking out on “difficult issues” while serving on TA’s board. Picture: Julie Kiriacoudis

Leo Schlink Herald Sun

POLITICAL tensions have resurfaced in tennis with allegations former player Kerryn Pratt has been victimised for speaking out on “difficult issues” while serving on Tennis Australia’s board.

Pratt has lost her commentary role with TA, also revealing her invitation to the Australian Open’s Last8 Club has been cancelled.
“Australia has a proud history and status as a grand slam nation. For TA to treat its former players this way is, I believe, discriminatory and smacks of victimisation,” Pratt said.
TA rejected the accusations.
“We note on Ms Pratt’s resignation from the Board prior to the last Australian Open, she was publicly thanked for her contribution and continued to be engaged as a commentator at Tennis Australia events last summer,” TA said in a statement.
“She was also extended an invitation to the Last8 Club in 2016.
“The Tennis Australia board only made the decision not to extend a Last8 Club invitation for 2017 because of her recent legal claim.
“The Tennis Australia board decided it would be inappropriate and legally irresponsible to issue an invitation for 2017.
“An invitation to the Last8 Club at the Australian Open is not an automatic entitlement.

“In regards to the Tennis Australia’s domestic and global broadcast commitments this year, there have been numerous changes to the commentary line-up to meet the competing demands of a local and international TV audience, and the various requirements of a number of broadcasters.”
Pratt was one of four directors - along with Scott Tanner, Peter Armstrong and Janet Young - to resign from TA’s board in the lead-up to last year’s Australian Open.
None of the group has spoken publicly since about the reasons behind their abrupt departures but it is known they raised concerns over board decisions, governance and process.
One known area of contention was the 2015-19 broadcasting rights deal with Seven West Media..
Pratt was told two months ago her commentary contract with TA would not be extended, ending a 15-year stint which started with Channel Seven.
“Not renewing my commentary contract is, I believe, a direct result of my speaking out on difficult issues during my board tenure.” she said.
“After 15 consecutive years commentary on the AO (Australian Open) and AO series, I’m disappointed not to be in the booth this year.
“I believe this is not a coincidence or lineup change for any reason but retribution.”
That decision prompted Pratt to submit a letter of claim to TA on December 14.
“It was a legal letter about what I regarded as reputational and financial damage and victimisation for raising concerns and issues during my time as a director,” she said.
On December 27, Pratt says she received an email from TA president Steve Healy, telling her Australian Open privileges - entitlements she says she had not sought - had been withdrawn and her invitation to the Last8 Club had been cancelled.
Players qualify for membership of the Last8 Club by reaching either the Australian Open singles quarter-finals, doubles semi-finals or mixed doubles final.
Pratt contested the 1979 doubles semi-finals with Elizabeth Little, mother of current players John and Sally Peers.
“Membership of The Last8 Club is a privilege earned as a player and I feel should have nothing to do with my time as a director or my media work,” Pratt said.
“I’d hate to see the club used as a political weapon for administrators to be able to ban former players who speak up about issues.
“I’ve been involved in tennis all my life in so many different ways and now it seems TA want to ostracise me from the sport. I can only see this as retaliation.”
Pratt insists she has not broken board confidentiality despite many approaches by media organisations.
“I feel the necessity to speak now about what I consider a violation of my rights as a former player,” she said.
“Australia has a proud history and status as a grand slam nation. For TA to treat its former players this way is, I believe, discriminatory and smacks of victimisation.”
In a separate move, Dr Young has filed a defamation lawsuit against Healy in the Supreme Court of Victoria.
It is understood Dr Young, twice part of champion Fed Cup teams, has also had her Last8 Club invitation cancelled.
Dec 5th, 2016 01:40 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Random, but does anyone know what happened to Pamela Boyanov?

I thought she could have been quite a decent player but looks like has completely stopped playing. Hasn't played since May 2015 and is now unranked in the Australian Rankings. Did she pull an Azra?
Nov 28th, 2016 01:28 PM
Sandgroper Sam
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

3 of the girls nominated were playing in the main draw Australian Open and Fourlis won an ITF tournament. I'd say that's why they were the four chosen. Award is really for December -> November so no surprise they put all their weighting on start of the year at home. Just a shame the rest of year wasn't really notable or that we saw any progression. Injuries will have played a part there.
Nov 28th, 2016 12:36 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Originally Posted by TS View Post
Wonder why Aiava wasn't nominated??? That doesn't make any sense. Maybe she's not in with TA these days? I mean, if Rajicic is in her team, I'd say it's pretty likely she's not in favour

Birrell is a worthy winner, but lol at winning an award despite being inactive for most of the year.
It does not look good for the others nominees
Nov 28th, 2016 11:39 AM
Avada Kedavra!
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

So glad that Dylan won! 😍
Nov 28th, 2016 11:13 AM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Lizette looks amazing in her beautiful red dress.
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