New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone? - TennisForum.com
 50Likes
Reply
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 05:26 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
larryd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 1,157
                     
New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

The United States Clay Court Championships, a men’s tennis tournament that ended Sunday in Houston, signaled something beyond the transition from the hardcourt season to clay.

It marked the end of the tennis tours’ two-month American swing, which featured six tournaments, including two of the biggest tournaments outside of the four Grand Slam events — the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, Calif., and the Miami Open.

As the ATP and WTA Tours shift to the red clay and grass courts of Europe, the next major events in the United States won’t come until the hardcourt season in July in the lead-up to the United States Open.

And after the U.S. Open wraps up in early September, the tennis tours depart again, spending much of end of the season in Asia.
American tennis fans used to have more options. In 1990, 24 of 55 WTA events were in the United States. But with the sale of the Connecticut Open in New Haven this year, only seven of 55 WTA events currently on the 2019 calendar are on American soil. Five of those seven are joint events with men, including the U.S. Open, Indian Wells and Miami.

On the men’s side, 16 of 77 worldwide ATP events in 1990 took place in the United States. This year, 11 of 63 will be.
At one time, both the men’s and women’s year-end tour finals were played at Madison Square Garden, but now the men’s event takes place in London and the women’s is in Shenzhen, China. Smaller tournaments in the United States have had trouble selling enough tickets and sponsorships to stay financially viable. And there was even some concern that the Miami Open, which was looking for a new stadium site last year, might be lured out of the country.

“I don’t think that we will ever become a U.S.-centric tour again,” said Steve Simon, the chief executive of the WTA. “I think there’s certainly room for growth for a couple more events, but I think the growth will be in that the events that are here in the States will continue to get bigger. But I do think that we have moved to having a global footprint versus being focused primarily in one country.”
Simon said that the WTA planned to introduce two new events in the United States, one beginning this year and another in 2020, both of which will take place the week before the U.S. Open. The location of the 2019 tournament, which would bring the total of WTA events in the country to eight, is expected to be announced in May.

The decline in the number of American tournaments over the last three decades corresponds with the decline in the number of Americans atop the world rankings — especially on the men’s side — and the growth of tennis in Europe and Asia.

In December 1990, seven of the top 20 men’s players in the world were Americans, including household names like Andre Agassi, Pete Sampras, Michael Chang and John McEnroe.

The current rankings feature only John Isner at No. 10 among the top 20, followed by Frances Tiafoe at No. 29. They are the only American men in the top 50, and no American man has won a Grand Slam event since Andy Roddick at the U.S. Open in 2003. Since then, Europeans, led by Switzerland’s Roger Federer, Spain’s Rafael Nadal and Serbia’s Novak Djokovic, have won 59 of the 61 major titles.

Women’s tournaments fled the United States even though Serena and Venus Williams were dominant players over the past 20 years and are the reason many current American players took up tennis.

With more than half of the world’s population in Asia, the WTA looked to that continent as a pillar of growth, said Stacey Allaster, the chief executive of professional tennis for the United States Tennis Association and a former leader of the WTA.

In 1990, there were only four WTA tournaments in Asia. This season there are 11 in China alone, part of a tennis boom fueled by the success of Li Na.

"I don’t think it’s about the quantity of events” in the United States, Allaster said. “We need successful events.”

And for smaller tournaments, being successful can be tough.

When Anne Worcester, the tournament director of the Connecticut Open, realized the tournament was no longer economically viable, she attempted to find a new title sponsor for the event in New Haven.

She considered offers from various American cities, but ultimately sold the tournament to the highest bidder, APG, a sports and entertainment company with a strong footprint in Asia. This year, the tournament, which used to be held the week before the U.S. Open, will be in Zhengzhou, China, the week after the Open.

“It has been very emotional to let go of something that I’ve birthed and nurtured for 21 years,” said Worcester, who was the chief executive of the WTA from 1994 to ’98. “My kids are 21 and 23, so it was really like having a third child. But the economics were so clear and because I was leading the charge to secure a title sponsor as well as cultivate bidders around the world, I just saw the writing on the wall. As much as our board didn’t want to sell, there was just no choice.”

Worcester said it was hard to sell tickets and sponsorships in part because there were fewer American stars to promote. The Connecticut Open in recent years has featured European stars like Simona Halep, Petra Kvitova and Caroline Wozniacki.
“In this global sport of tennis, it’s not easy to promote non-Americans,” Worcester said. “Americans want to see Americans.”
She remembered her time as the director of worldwide operations for the Virginia Slims Tour, which began in 1970, organized by Billie Jean King and backed by the Philip Morris company.

“Just in the United States of America, Virginia Slims had 17 named tournaments in the major markets of the United States,” Worcester said. “And women’s tennis was filling arenas, indoor and outdoors. It was a very different era, a very different economy, a different product. There were more American players that were on a first-name basis with the world.”

The bleeding may have stopped on WTA events leaving the United States. Interest was high in the New Haven event, Worcester said, because global bidders knew that a tournament of its caliber would not be sold again for a long time.

When the men’s Memphis Open faced declining profit and failed to secure a title sponsor several years ago, Josh Ripple feared the event might be purchased by a company that would move the tournament outside the United States.

Ripple, a former president of the WTA Tour, is the executive vice president of GF Sports, a New York-based events company that owns and operates several pro sports events.

In 2015, an affiliate of GF Sports purchased the tournaments in Memphis and Atlanta from the U.S.T.A. and committed to not letting them leave the United States, Ripple said.

After speaking with representatives from Nashville; Columbus, Ohio; Seattle; Dallas; and Phoenix, Ripple and his company moved the Memphis event in 2018 to the renovated Nassau Coliseum on Long Island, where it was held in February. (The Racquet Club in Memphis, which hosted the tournament for 40 years, is closing this spring and will be turned into a hotel and apartment complexes.)
"Hopefully, it can have a nice long stay in New York,” Isner said, adding that he liked “playing in the United States as much as possible.”

Patrick McEnroe, an ESPN analyst, said that the major American events like the U.S. Open, Indian Wells, Miami and Cincinnati are stronger and more popular than ever but that the lower-level events like the New York Open might continue to face difficulties.

“To me, the only way that those can get back to being consistently viable year after year is if at the top we have more American tennis players close to the top that have personality that can sell some tickets,” he said.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/15/sports/tennis/american-tennis-tournaments.html
M.A.S.L., KCatty and ziggy2shus3 like this.
larryd is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 05:52 AM
GOD?
 
Queen Vika's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Field of Burning Crosses
Posts: 7,641
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

中国
Juju Nostalgique likes this.

***

”It’s Like a Prayer”
Queen Vika is offline  
post #3 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 05:56 AM
Senior Member
 
Haleptard's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Posts: 3,534
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

That's for the best, 7 seems like a good number of tournaments to have in the US. Why would one country host 24 out of 55 WTA events

Tipping Singles: (1) Saint-Gaudens 60k '18
Tipping Doubles: (4) Joue-Les-Tours 50k '17, Sofia 25k '17, Nantes 25k '17, Di Pula II 25k '18

Suicide: (2) Bastad '17, Hobart '18


Haleptard is offline  
 
post #4 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 06:03 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 31,366
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

Well you got LA, NY, Miami, Montreal/Toronto, Cincy, SanFran (Stanford is still a thing, right?). Where else could you realistically hold a major P5/PM event, calendar and weather-wise? Texas, Boston, Chicago? I don´t know.

I am not a fan of the direction a lot of Maria threads have taken over the last 12 months.
The undertone is very disappointing, aggressive and the comments are sometimes rude to a player just trying to earn a living, playing her hardest and having a good amount of success given her god given, natural talents.
You made the list: NEW President Bouchard, Cibulkova, Mladenovic, Wozniacki, Kerber, Cornet, Watson, Broady.
Please note this is a signature about Tatjana Maria
Patrick345 is offline  
post #5 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 06:23 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 24,877
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

The New York Open in Long Island is one of the saddest events in pro tennis. San Jose last year just felt weird after having the event in Stanford for so many years. New Haven’s struggles have obviously been well-documented.

The ITF circuit (and 125K series) in America is booming though. US sponsors just aren’t willing to put in the money for ATP and WTA tournaments.

150K Newport Beach
150K Indian Wells
150K Chicago
150K Houston
100K Midland
100K Charleston
100K Bonita Springs
100K Concord
80K Palm Harbor
80K Dothan
80K Charlottesville
80K Macon
80K Tyler
60K Honolulu
60K Berkeley
60K Ashland
60K Lexington
60K Landisville
60K Templeton
60K Stockton
60K Las Vegas
mckyle. is offline  
post #6 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 07:18 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 914
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

When I started watching tennis in the 70s the Virginia Slims circuit was entirely in the US. From 1974 World Team Tennis kept all the top players in the US except for a few weeks in the middle for Wimbledon.

Even the Australian and French Opens were effectively at International level, because the organisers of those events didn't want to put money into women's tennis.

The original women's Grand Prix tour collapsed due to prize money issues and it was only when Colgate and the WTA created the International Series later in the decade that major women's tennis started to spread further into Australia, Europe and Japan.

Now things look like they have moved too far away from the US but Indian Wells and Miami should count double as they take up 2 weeks of the calendar.

We are lucky here in the UK as we have 5 weeks of WTA Tour events, such is the importance of Wimbledon and the grasscourt tradition. Shame we don't have any players likely to win them.
jimbo mack and ziggy2shus3 like this.
Dodge is offline  
post #7 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 07:31 AM
Senior Member
 
Drimal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Luxembourg
Posts: 18,209
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

Thank god the times of 24 out of 55 events in United States (43%) are over on WTA.
TheBoiledEgg and ziggy2shus3 like this.

->Katerina_Siniakova • Naomi_Osaka • Mandy_Minella <-
Drimal is offline  
post #8 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 08:37 AM
.
 
BlueTrees's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Québec
Posts: 16,839
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

Need more tournaments in Canada.
Juju Nostalgique and Boogaloo like this.
BlueTrees is offline  
post #9 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 08:40 AM
Senior Member
 
Mateo Mathieu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Piccadilly Circus
Posts: 63,161
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

Go away, USA. We're not interested.
Shankitova likes this.


"The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page."

~ St. Augustine
Mateo Mathieu is offline  
post #10 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 09:13 AM
Senior Member
 
coolfish1103's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 15,051
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mckyle. View Post
The ITF circuit (and 125K series) in America is booming though. US sponsors just aren’t willing to put in the money for ATP and WTA tournaments.

150K Newport Beach
150K Indian Wells
150K Chicago
150K Houston
100K Midland
100K Charleston
100K Bonita Springs
100K Concord
80K Palm Harbor
80K Dothan
80K Charlottesville
80K Macon
80K Tyler
60K Honolulu
60K Berkeley
60K Ashland
60K Lexington
60K Landisville
60K Templeton
60K Stockton
60K Las Vegas
It simply means your product is not up-to-par (especially for WTA) for the $ required.

Sponsors are simply voting their wallet somewhere else.

So what happens when a friend or partner holds a different opinion against your favorite?
- Agree to disagree, don't hold grudges for someone else

Historic #1: FITD S / Tipping S&D / Tennis Tipping D
coolfish1103 is offline  
post #11 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 09:29 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: florida
Posts: 24,905
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

This board hates Serena. More threads like this are going to pop up as she exits the game. I saw this coming. LOL!
Absolute10 likes this.

-one of those "bad" Williams fans that everyone keeps talking about


OFFICIAL BLACKSMITH OF THE ROYAL COURT

I don't mind straight people as long as they act gay in public!
Pureracket is offline  
post #12 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 09:33 AM
Rest in peace Bally
 
Juju Nostalgique's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Admiring Kimiko
Posts: 14,837
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

M.A.S.L. likes this.

Aliona Bolsova - Pride of Palafrugell
Paula Badosa & SaiSai Zheng & Garbiñe Muguruza & DR Collins & Bianca Andreescu
Qristina Wang & Genie Bouchard & Carol Zhao & Aryna Sabalenka & Naomi Osaka
Jamie Hampton & Sam Crawford
All-Time Favourites
~ Monica Seles & Justine Henin & Núria Llagostera & Li Na
Juju Nostalgique is offline  
post #13 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 09:41 AM
Senior Member
 
Miracle Worker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Universe
Posts: 29,504
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

A lot of players don't give a shit about their game - they tank, giving walkover, come to play for paycheck. Why should anyone pay them?

People see this and just don't want to invest their money in such product like WTA. Especially in USA where you have whole ocean of opportunities to waste your money.

The Brainless Pusher
Ernests Gulbis, Marin Cilic, John Isner
Gilles Simon, Nicolas Almagro, Tommy Haas, Jack Sock
Kimiko Date Krumm, Tomas Berdych, Michail Youzhny, Daniel Brands
Elena Dementieva, Julia Cohen, Anna Chakvetadze
Miracle Worker is offline  
post #14 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 10:10 AM
Senior Member
 
iGOAT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Team Vika
Posts: 29,800
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Miracle Worker View Post
A lot of players don't give a shit about their game - they tank, giving walkover, come to play for paycheck. Why should anyone pay them?

People see this and just don't want to invest their money in such product like WTA. Especially in USA where you have whole ocean of opportunities to waste your money.
It is true that the players have played a large role in this phenomenon . They withdraw, give walkovers, retire, tank, don't return, etc. Sort of poetic justice that they then get sent to Wuhan instead .

My number one: Victoria Azarenka

ATP: Novak Djoković

Crazy Frenchies: Gilles Simon Alizé Cornet
iGOAT is online now  
post #15 of 56 (permalink) Unread Apr 16th, 2019, 10:19 AM
Senior Member
 
iGOAT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Team Vika
Posts: 29,800
                     
Re: New York Times: Where have all the American tournaments gone?

VERY good news though if the WTA is planning to announce a New Haven replacement (in the US) soon, and have another event that week next year . Not sure I believe the latter claim, but a no-event week would be a travesty.
jimbo mack and Dodge like this.

My number one: Victoria Azarenka

ATP: Novak Djoković

Crazy Frenchies: Gilles Simon Alizé Cornet
iGOAT is online now  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the TennisForum.com forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in













Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome