2 Comments

  1. This is absolutely ridicules on so many levels. Is this committee living in a cave in Tibet? Would it be possible to be more out of touch with tennis? We have just had a year long battle over cutting opportunity in junior tennis? Coaches, parents and players hate and want no part of it at all. They want more opportunity as opposed to less. And they certainly don't want cuts with the promise of adding other events. We have enough of that already. We have novice and satellite circuits that every kid who doesn't want to play the designateds. If this sport doesn't start getting more inclusive as opposed to exclusive, it is going to implode on itself. I would like to know how many parents of junior players are on this committee making this decision? I bet it is not a high number. Because no one who is at these tournaments, regularly engaging with these kids would every remotely suggest that this is a smart change. Were the draws too big for Pete Sampras, Lindsey Davenport or the Bryan Brothers? Were they too big for Tracy Austin, Steve Johnson or Nicole Gibbs? Please SCTA do not do this! Tennis is already hard enough on kids and every month it seems like there are a few kids who aren't playing the tournaments anymore. The names and players just sort of disappear. My child started way, way at the back of the pack. It was large designated tournaments that kept the interest there.

  2. I am somewhat pulled in both directions by this situation. My child is a highly-ranked player in one age division and is currently playing up (she has not played in her natural age division in nearly four months). I believe that the weather is a legitimate issue, even for Southern California. The rainy season (December-April) overlaps with several designated tournaments and we have seen first-hand each year the chaos that ensues when rain comes and you are trying to fit in seven rounds of a tournament (times two genders times five age groups times doubles) into two weekends. How good is the tennis when players are getting up before 5:00 a.m. to drive to make an 8:00 a.m. start time? How good is the tennis when players are asked to play four matches (two singles and two doubles) in one day? How good is the tennis when you are driving between three sites (in Southern California traffic) in one day? In these large draw designated tournaments (and I include USTA regional and national tournaments here) there are way too many 6-1, 6-0 blow-outs. Having attended nationals in 2012 I was stunned at the poor quality of at least 25% of the players - they had no business playing in a national tournament. In the case of the Southern California designated tournaments there is typically at least one other 'open' tournament scheduled on that weekend(s). Do well in the 'lesser' tournaments and you will earn the points that will get you into the designated tournaments.

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