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Discussion Starter #1
We all know why this was introduced in 93/94 because of Capriati's burn-out from tennis.

But really don't you think now that if they can't remove it, they could at least lower the age to play full-time on the tour to 16.

I have seen many players complain about the rule (Anna, Dokic to name 2) but never seen anyone say about how great it was for them.

There have been no cases since Capriati, and she to be honest was a one-off, Hingis was the last player to take advantage of not playing under the rule in playing at the end of 94.

What are your views on this?
 

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I would love to see a 13 year old girl kick the top players' butts! I mean, if the talent is there, why not?
 

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I know a lot of the young players are really held back by it, especially those whose game requires a lot of matchplay to hone, like Lina K. TBE's the one to ask, though.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
And the other problem I think is that when they turn 18 they over-schedule and play near enough every single week...and you can't blame them as they had been held back for playing when they want for so long...and I do think it doesn't help.
 

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Lina's suffering from it, had she been able to play fully last year, I have no doubts she would have made Munich.

It holds alot of players back but its for their protection really, some see it and others don't.


Take Dokic for instance, once she was clear of the AER rules she played every week until end of year, missing just Strasbourg and Shanghai due to withdrawals.

If she'd been say 15 and done that ...... thats where the problem comes in..... burn out.
 

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i disagree. i think for a 13 year old girl (boy) to leave their familly, friends, stable environment...and education at that age is stupid. your right it would be good for the game to see someone beat a top player but in the long run it could harm them..maybe not physically but mentally for sure. what these athletes do is amazing and i give them all my uttermost respect..constantly travelling, being away from loved ones always under pressure..from media, coachs, agents and in most cases there own famillys. i just dont think its right. kids need to go to there proms (in usa) or there cheesey disco (in the UK:rolleyes: ) experiance the pressure of exams in a room full of people and all kinds of shit we do...i can say that cant i:confused:

i mean this is just my opinion and im sure theres gonna be a load of people who disagree with me but hey...thats what debates and discussions are!!

love ya all:kiss:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Eggy, re. my post above yours, if players could play when they wanted imo they wouldn't over-schedule.

Dokic complained about the restricitions a few times and I really believe that if she didn't have that she would never have scheuled like she has done for the past couple of years. Players get frustrated and when they hit 18, they play as much as they can to get as many points as they can to push their ranking higher to a place where they feel it should be if they had not been restricted they are making up for lost time.

Kim did that for a little but I think she realised after a while the damage it could do.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Kelly, I see your point but I think if a player wants to be a world class tennis player it should be their choice and if necessary they can go back and get an education if that is what they want.

But really the older generation of players I can't think of any it harmed. But then this is just my opinion.
 

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Well, when Jelena turned 18, she was hungry to play! At 17, Capriati was yearning for a break.

I think young girls and boys should not be able to play full time until maybe 17. THis way, they get a taste..and it means more. JImmy Connors mom only gave him 15 mnutes on the court a daywhen he was young, to keep him hungry. Of course there are probably exceptions, but not for 13, 14 or even 15 year olds. Capriati was the exception. I do not think there are many 13 year olds that could beat top 10 players like Jen did. Jen was really the exception to the rule. I think it is good they changed it.
 

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The rule is totally useless without coordination with the ITF Junior, because when you take into consideration their Junior schedule and their limited WTA events they are already overexerting themselves. I checked the schedules of a few top juniors and most of them played more tennis than the average player on the tour when you add their junior and senior events.

So in essence the rule doesnt really accomplish anything. Only in sports is a child allowed to work these types of hours.
 

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This issue is older than 1994. Pam Shriver talks about teen "burnout" and possible rules in her 1985 book Passing Shots. As Shriver pointed out then(and it's still true)any age eligibility rules can be gotten around because of exhibitions.

There were rules limiting teens as early as 1990(it was known as the "Jaeger" rule then) and the WTA violated it's own rules by letting Jennifer go over the limit so she could qualify for the WTA finals.


I doubt that dropping the rules would make these young women play a more sensible schedule. Why?
For one, it's the parents who decide where they play in 90% of the cases. And few of them learn to reduce schedules even into their 20's until seriously injured.

One way to stop overplaying is to change the ranking system by going back to the averaging ranking system,or to reduce the number of events counting towards a ranking. Even these measures would have only a limited effect.

Whatever is done, the bottom line is the incentives are too great for parents, agents, and the girls(and I mean girls, not women) to usually resist temptation. Gone are the days when Chris Evert's parents limited her til she 18 she
finished high school.
 

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Burn out isn't just about the physical exersions (sic), but the mental ones too.

If there was no AER yes, the amount played would even itself out (ie it'd be unlikely you'd get the state of affairs with Jelena, once she was free of AER), but you have to consider how AER can potentially lead to mental scars.

Hingis was not restricted by AER, and she's turned out OK I hear you say?

Well, the simple truth is that Martina and her relationship with tennis approaches savant-like status and you can't expect player to have that kind of mental fortitude.

What happens to the Sonya Jeyaseelan to name but one example? Mental fatigue and injury. The vast majority of players can only dream of getting a career high rank of sub 50. And that's what AER tries to protect.

I know what people mean about 'if you're good enough, then you're old enough'. It was great to see Jennifer just totally whipping Martina's arse. Martina Navratilova, that is. But you can still have that with AER, it just safeguards the players against the weariness (... and young girls, they do get weary ;)) of the Tour.
 

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with the AER ruling, it has drastically improved the standard of the junior game.

but the juniors play too much and at the top level tourn they are expected to play 6 matches in 6 days as well as doubles.
ITF has also given an incentive to finish in the top 10 of end of year Junior ranks as this gives those players 3 selected entries into various levels of Challenger events.

Rollo ...... the AER ruling also affects exhibitions.
in their final year they are only allowed 4 exhibition tourns

16-17 3 Exhibitions
15-16 2 Exhibitions
14-15 1 Exhibition
 

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Exhibitions are any Non-Tour event between two or more players

Penalties are stiff..... fines of upto $25K and/or being banned upto 6 months from all WTA/ITF events
 

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The other thing is that the (particularly when you're younger) the more
you win, the more you want to play. The more you lose, the more your
coach and parents could pressure you into play.

If there's no AER too much pressure is being put on a young player. And again,
I'm not talking about the Dokic's or Krasnoroutskaya's of this world.
 

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I am in favor of age restrictions, but I believe they should end at age 17 rather than 18. I do not favor allowing 13-year-olds to play, but I think 15-year olds should be allowed what 16-year olds are allowed now, and 16 year olds should have the limitations now imposed on 17 year olds.

So if they just adjusted it this one notch, while keeping the 14-year olds to current restrictions, I think all would benefit.
 

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Do we really need to see other parents pimping out their kids the way Stefano did to Jen?

The rule was put there for a reason.
 

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I really do think that the AER is there for the protection of the players. Both physically and mentally it isn't good for a 14/15 year old to be playing full time on the WTA tour. On the other hand, I think that 18 is quite a high limit. After all, in most countries you can leave school and find a job at 16 and that should apply also to playing professional tennis.
 

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Well personally I don't like age restrictions in any sport at all because first of all it's hard to draw the line at a certain age... certain 17 year olds may be more mature than some 20 year olds so it's not really fair for them not to be able to play. Also the cases like Jennifer's are rare... I think it's really too bad that happened because now it takes away that oppurtunity to other 14 year olds... also I think if the parents of that child feel that it's not good for her to be playing then don't let her play... it's not up to the wta tour to baby-sit. Anyways my thinking has always been that if you're good enough, you can be 10,15,25,75 whatever...
 
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