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  Topic Review (Newest First)
Sep 16th, 2015 01:25 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Tournament founder, Paul McNamee is pretty stunned with this two team development.

Aussies double up for Hopman Cup

Steve Butler and Neil Devey September 16, 2015, 11:31 am

Casey Dellacqua, left, and Lleyton Hewitt teamed up for the 2009 Hopman Cup, where they lost to Germany's Nicolas Kiefer and Sabine Lisicki. Pic: WA News

The final on-court chapter of Australian tennis legend Lleyton Hewitt will include a Perth farewell after being named to partner WA’s Casey Dellacqua in next year’s Hopman Cup.

Hewitt, who has confirmed he will retire after the Australian Open in January, will make his eighth appearance at the tournament and his first since 2012 when it starts again on January 3. It will be Dellacqua’s third tilt at the cup in her home State.

Australia’s only win in the tournament came in 1999 when Mark Philippoussis and Jelena Dokic claimed victory in the international mixed teams event.

Hopman Cup tournament director Paul Kilderry also announced that Australia would also field a second team at the tournament for the first time. Hewitt and Dellacqua will compete as “Australia Gold” and there will also be an as-yet unnamed “Australia Green” team.

Hewitt said the Hopman Cup would play a perfect role in his tennis swansong this summer.

“For my last Australian Open I think it’s great preparation,“ Hewitt said.

“I’m guaranteed the three matches, but hopefully four if we can make the final.

“I’ve always loved playing the Hopman Cup. I love playing for my country. I’ve got a lot of great memories.”

The closest Hewitt has come to tasting Hopman Cup success was when he reached the final with Alicia Molik in 2003, with the US pairing of James Blake and Serena Williams prevailing 3-0.

World No.3 and dual grand slam winner Andy Murray will again represent Great Britain alongside Heather Watson. Great Britain have never won the tournament.

Murray said his appearance would give him the ideal preparation for the Australian Open.

"The thing I like most about it from a preparation standpoint is that the conditions are extremely hot there," Murray said.

"And you're guaranteed to play three singles, three mixed matches, so you get time on court."

WA Tourism Minister Kim Hames said the appearance of Hewitt in the field should guarantee a big crowd.

“Lleyton Hewitt has represented Australia at the Hopman Cup seven times and is a very popular player, so I’m sure West Australians will be turning out in force to see him compete here for the final time,” he said.

“The cup is a great opportunity for Perth fans to farewell a former world No.1 before he retires next year.”

The decision to run two Australian teams brought a scathing response from former tournament director Paul McNamee, who tweeted that "it's unfathomable".

McNamee, the co-founder of the Hopman Cup who was removed from his position by the International Tennis Federation in 2012, said he hoped the move "doesn't actually eventuate".

"I'll take it up officially ... The right way," he tweeted.

More than 95,700 fans visited Perth Arena for Hopman Cup 2015, which featured nine top-20 players, including four top-10 players.

Dr Hames said he was proud the State Government was a founding sponsor of the Hopman Cup through Tourism WA.

“The State Government’s support started when the Hopman Cup began in 1989 and, thanks to a new agreement signed last year, the event has been secured for WA until 2022,” he said.

“Events like this form an important part of the State Government’s strategy to grow the value of tourism to $12 billion by 2020.”
Sep 16th, 2015 01:18 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

To increase our chances in Hopman Cup this year, Australia will be fielding TWO teams. Yes.... TWO TEAMS

The defending champions, Poland, will not be defending their title . Let's hope it's because Aggie has declined to play and not because the promoters want to overindulge the Summer with Australians.

Murray, Hewitt to headline 2016 Hopman Cup

Andy Murray will once again kick start his season in Perth, as he and Heather Watson will form the British team in the 2016 Hopman Cup on 3-9 January, the tournament has announced.

The duo combined last year too in the ITF’s mixed-team competition – seven days of enjoyable, world-class tennis staged at the 15,500-seater Perth Arena – as they narrowly missed out on reaching the final.

World No. 3 Murray won all three of his singles matches in the 2015 event, preparing him for a deep run to the Australian Open final, where he was edged out by Novak Djokovic.

Murray believes the Hopman Cup is perfect preparation for the gruelling Australian summer swing which starts the tennis year:

“The new centre court [at the Perth Arena] is extremely similar to Melbourne Park and Rod Laver Arena, so it’s great preparation for the Aussie Open”, he said.

“The thing I like most about it from a preparation standpoint is that the conditions are extremely hot there and also you’re guaranteed matches”.

“You’re guaranteed to play three singles, three mixed matches, so you get time on court”.

As well as the event being an efficient way to back into the swing of the tour and gain match practice, Watson also pointed out how fun and exciting it is:

“I loved being on a team with Andy”, she asserted, “I didn’t really have to do much work because he did it all. He was just so fun to play with, very relaxed”.

“Perth Arena is amazing to play in. The atmosphere is always great and I think the Aussie crowd is one of the best”.

“I absolutely love playing for my country. Every opportunity I get, I usually take it”.

Home hero Lleyton Hewitt, playing the Australian summer series to end his career, will also be present alongside Casey Dellacqua, who was born in Perth.

30-year-old Dellacqua is currently ranked world No. 5 in doubles and has reached six women’s doubles Grand Slam finals, including last week at the US Open. Her only Slam triumph though has been in the mixed competition at the 2011 French Open.

The pairing of Hewitt and Dellacqua will be the Australia Gold team, since, for the first time in Hopman Cup history, the hosts will have two sets of representatives. The Australia Green team will be announced next month.

Former world No. 1 Hewitt said: “I’ve always loved playing the Hopman Cup. I love playing for my country”.

“I’ve got a lot of great memories…the amazing crowds. Every year the crowds turn up no matter what countries are playing each other, but especially when Australia is playing. It’s always a packed house”.

Hewitt will face Murray this weekend as Great Britain host Australia in the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas World Group crunch semifinal in Glasgow.

Tournament director Paul Kilderry also revealed that other teams would be from the Czech Republic, Germany, France, Ukraine and USA, with current champions Poland not defending their title.

The eight teams are in two pools of four, with a round-robin format then ensuing in each. One pool features Great Britain, the French, Germans and Australia Green; the other boasts Australia Gold, the Americans, Ukrainians and Czechs. The winner of each group advances to the final.

Feb 8th, 2013 12:20 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Interesting article, thanks for posting.
Jan 26th, 2013 10:21 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

The usual articles that pop out at this time about the state of Australian tennis. Though some worthy points about creating an overseas base and how many of our top coaches aren't involved with TA.

TENNIS Australia's greatest mistake is not using interested private Australian coaches to develop our top young players of the future.
Instead of a few state or TA paid coaches handling our top young juniors, TA could have nearly every coach in Australia working towards the same goal.
State coaches or regional directors need a car, an iPhone and a basket of balls - not to sit in an office, but be driving the game forward from the courts, assisting players and coaches to train and to take the leading players to tournaments so everyone can work together.

For more than 30 years, tennis in Australia has relied on the AIS or state squads to develop our leading players.
The fact that over this period Australia's top male players, Pat Cash, Pat Rafter, Lleyton Hewitt and now Bernard Tomic have not been a part of such a program must, somehow, reflect on its failure to produce players despite millions being poured into the system.
These champions were developed by private coaches who, in the present system, lose their top players to this system with obvious results.
Australia has some of the best and dedicated coaches in the world. In fact, no matter were you go in the world you will often find an Australian coach in the area.
Even the great Roger Federer was coached in his early days by the late Peter Carter and others such as Tony Roche, Darren Cahill, Roger Rasheed and Jason Stoltenberg continue to be prominent coaches - all of them ex-players, but totally committed to the game.
Why do Australian private coaches fight with TA instead of working together to develop top players? Because very few see the system as working and the results prove that.
Tennis is a business and in any business if you do not produce results, you either change or fail.
Some coaches give up working with good players because they know how much time and effort is involved - and if you're going to lose your top player anyway, why bother?
The private coaches need to be part of a new system, encouraged to develop players along with dedicated state coaches (not just ex-players looking for a post-circuit job).
There has to be flexibility in the program for country kids to go to a large country centre, if they cannot get a coach or the quality hitting hours and tournaments.
I have seen how a large country centre such as Albury can drive the game and have hundreds of kids playing and produce top players as well.

For more than 20 years I have advocated having a base in France for three months a year. Why France? Clay courts, a fantastic grading system and lots of tough tournaments.
Players who play in France and do well often show the guts needed to succeed on the pro circuit.
So many times heaps of money is spent on players who in the end do not want to grind out a career in tennis, but look for the easy way out. France would sort them out.
TA's response to this proposal is it is worried about liability. It does have an arrangement with a club in Spain and England. The English teams go to France and Spain (Murray) and we go to England!
Many Australians living in France would love to help in this area from Gail Chanfreau to Bob Brett, just to name a couple.

Tennis Australia has started Australian Money Tournaments which is fantastic and allow players to play for a very limited purse at tournaments around Australia. This is similar to the French Tournaments but a lot more money needs to go into these tournaments, so young players can continue the game rather than drop out at 16. This also provides more competition for our younger players coming through and gives them more experience against older players.
So many players do not peak until their early 20s (Rafter) so these tournaments keep players in the game. More money must be spent in this area and not wasted on 12 and 14-year-olds, who in a lot of cases do not go on with the game.

A new tournament system was developed last year with consequences for coaches who take groups away.
If players make the main draw in a four-day tournament they do not play the first two days while qualifiers play. If the qualifiers in your group lose in the first two days, they sit around for two days. What a nightmare.
Coaches will stop taking players away. Give the tournament directors flexibility and options in handling this so coaches are encouraged to take players away and players get a lot of tennis (e.g. a continuous feed-in).
Richard Howes has played and coached tennis in Australia and overseas since 1967. He worked with Pat Rafter between the ages of 13 and 17 and took him on his first tour overseas. At present he coaches young players in tournaments in Queensland, NSW and Victoria.

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Jan 16th, 2013 11:39 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Paul McNamee has so many beefs with TA. He's probably avoiding supporting any Oz players while TA is the way it is. Or maybe they won't let him near any Oz players?
Jan 16th, 2013 10:26 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

^ he's based in Melbourne, but he's working with no Aussie players, what a pity!

He'd be a great help to Rogowska to make her more attacking.
Jan 16th, 2013 01:35 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Originally Posted by TS View Post
Speaking of Paul McNamee, I just read in the paper that he is coaching Su-Wei Hsieh

Su-Wei sounds like a character
He coached her at AO last year also.

Think he started off working with her at Grand Slams and now it has developed further...
Jan 16th, 2013 10:30 AM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Speaking of Paul McNamee, I just read in the paper that he is coaching Su-Wei Hsieh

Su-Wei sounds like a character
Dec 27th, 2012 01:07 AM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Paul MacNamee
Dec 27th, 2012 12:17 AM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Heard a great interview with Paul MacNamee a few weeks ago on the radio. He used much of the time bagging out TA which was good listening. He blames the demise of Australian tennis on the current system on ‘squads’ and AIS etc… and believes if we kept in the system that was in place in pre-80’s in that promoting and fostering tennis clubs around the country we would have greater participation and better success in transitioning players into the tour.

The club system is still successful in Germany, France, Spain who have greater participation and success than Australia these days. Paul believes we are hell-bent on getting players in the ‘system’ as soon as possible which doesn’t promote their individuality and removes them from their own coaching structure that has worked well for them.

The host asked Paul if TA would ever change back to the club system and he said with the current people in place they never would. He also felt that TA had invested so much time and effort into this formula that they would never revert to another way because they had come so far in trying to make the system work. Paul did not hide is current bitterness with TA.
Dec 7th, 2012 02:29 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Lets not forget Ash Barty is a natural at the game and a product of Jim Joyce originally. The TA system does not create players, or take raw potential and develop it into something. It rides on the creation of others, and in a lot of cases, then stuffs it up. (Peers, Holland, Moore, Golds etc). Those happy with TA are likely those who benefit from the biased system. But engineering results short term will not work in the long term. I'm told most in AIS are on "wildcards" anyway and don't meet criteria, eg someone 17-18 years old (next gen) is supposed to be already within top WTA 220, but not sure who is at that level or whether the TA national academies or AIS can even produce that. We have enough raw talent starting in the sport, but no ability to harness and develop that into world class athletes.
Dec 7th, 2012 02:45 AM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Ummm you might make some valid points about Rasheed (however this is the type of coach some players need!!) but I personally think you are way out of line with those Roche comments.

Hewitt, of the best ever and a very good player both rate him as a coach....Sophie Ferguson was at her best after working with him......

The TA system has some flaws yes but we must also recognize the great work coaches like Jason Stoltenberg do with Ash Barty etc
Dec 6th, 2012 10:45 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Exactly. Roger Rasheed everyone knows is a shit coach, Tomic's dad had criticized him a few years ago that he was just a fitness coach, which is absolutely true. Whenever you listen what he has to say, all he talks about is footwork and movement, or which player seems to be cramping first.

Then there's the senile Tony Roche, not sure how he's even allowed to coach. Must have deep connections in TA.
Dec 6th, 2012 12:36 PM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

The TA system is sick and needs a major overhaul. But will it change? Most TA officials I've met have an arrogant streak about them, not sure why as they produce nothing. The players we have were started off by private coaches in the first place.
Dec 3rd, 2012 10:22 AM
Re: General Aussie Tennis News

Poor Matosevic, they are really treating him like a child. He owes nothing to them.

Fuck the old farts in Tennis Australia, for them if you don't play like Hewitt you are nothing.

Australian tennis players can only improve if we get coaches that develop real tennis skills at a young age, which is not just having a big heart and running like your life depended on it.
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