Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport? - MensTennisForums.com

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post #1 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-17-2010, 05:27 PM Thread Starter
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Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

I would say no.

All the countries where tennis is very popular like Spain,France,Argentina and Serbia soccer is more popular. Tennis is biggest in Europe but soccer reigns supreme in every country. Switzerland may be the closest in terms of popularity because of Federer but they also have winter sports to compete with. Maybe some of our Swiss posters can shed more light on the situation in Switzerland.

Every Latin American country crowns soccer as their king(except Dominican Republic and Venezuela where baseball wins out). Tennis has some popularity on Brazil,Ecuador,Chile and Colombia but again soccer dominates them.

Tennis is pretty much non-existent in the caribbean,Africa and in the Arab world. The USA has a multitude of other sports more popular than tennis. The english speaking countries like Canada do not recognize tennis as a major sport.

Australia maybe at one time had tennis #1 but I think Australian Rules football is more popular. Swimming also big there. Tennis has receded in popularity there.

The one place that maybe tennis is the #1 sport is Thailand. srichaphan made the sport very popular there. A local coach from around my area left the USA to go coach the hottest juniors in Thailand. Soccer isn't very popular there and there are really no other sports. But even then it hasn't produced any type of tennis boom from Thailand. Southeast Asia, like Myanmar,Laos,Cambodia really don't have a sport and tennis could become popular there but the poverty levels may prevent it from gaining steam. Vietnam is only good at poker while Indonesia and Malaysia are manic over badminton. Taiwan had some good juniors in tennis and the sport may be gaining popularity there.

India likes tennis but it is way behind cricket and other sports.

your thoughts on the popularity of tennis is certain countries and where it is most popular and where it can become more popular.

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post #2 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-17-2010, 05:29 PM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

Sweden maybe? Had a glittering history of tennis success compared to football...

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post #3 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-17-2010, 05:31 PM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

No

Ice hockey and football are way more popular in Sweden.

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post #4 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-17-2010, 05:40 PM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

That's a good point, never thought about this. I don't think there is...
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post #5 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-17-2010, 05:50 PM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

I remember reading an article about how Federer's victory in the 2005 Wimbledon final was only the 89th mosted view sporting event in Switzerland that year. Also I think the same article said that most of his other grand slam triumphs from 2003-2008 weren't even among the top 20 most viewed sporting events in their respective years. I think the 2003 Wimbledon final only came in at no. 27 that year. I'd assume that his historical RG and Wimbledon triumphes last year must surely have drawn higher ratings in Switzerland. Still from that I'd assume that tennis doesn't even come close to football there (and Switzerland are appearing in their 4th consecutive major tournament right now) and skiing and other winter sports.

I'd imagine that the height of tennis popularity in the US was probably the era of the Borg, Connors and McEnroe triumverate. I've heard that tennis was getting higher ratings than NBA basketball back then, though I imagine it still lagged way behind american football and baseball.

Even when the US had the fab four of Sampras, Agassi, Courier and Chang racking up big titles in the early 90s, tennis was still losing popularity. The casual tennis fans (who of course heavily outnumber the diehards) only cared about Agassi and not the other 3 players. Sampras, Courier and Chang were often bluntly asked in press conferences why there were 'so boring', and Sampras was also often asked what could be done to make the sport more popular in the US again.
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post #6 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-17-2010, 06:12 PM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

"It is better to be big in many countries than to be the biggest in a few"
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post #7 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-18-2010, 02:18 AM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

I've often thought about this and I can't think of any either.
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post #8 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-18-2010, 02:19 AM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

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"It is better to be big in many countries than to be the biggest in a few"
it's not that big in many countries either.
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post #9 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-18-2010, 02:30 AM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

I am not 100% sure but I think that in most contries team sports are more popular than individual sports, maybe with the exception of swimming in for example Australia.

Team sports are always being played in leagues whrere you either can watch your team in the stadium or watch it on a regular basis on TV. Tennis, Swimming or other individual sports are not that regular on TT and if they are it depends stronger on the fact if you like a certain player if you stay tuned. I mean when you are a fan of one player but you see a different player it isn´t as interesting as watching a game with a team that could be your opponent a few weeks later or that´s fighting for a position on a league table.
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post #10 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-18-2010, 02:38 AM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

tennis will never be a sport for the masses.

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post #11 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-18-2010, 09:38 AM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

in Spain it's popular. not so much as football of course but Rafa has "God status" there

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post #12 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 04:17 AM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

It's the national sport of Uzbekistan

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post #13 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 04:21 AM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

Not sure about Uzbekistan but Kazakhstan for sure
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post #14 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 11:30 PM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

Well it's up there in Australia. Ten years ago it might have been ever closer, it's receeded a bit since then. I think it's #1 among Australian women if that counts for anything. The Australian Open is probably THE biggest sporting event considering in a country of only 20 million, over 600,000 attended this year. Cricket, AFL and NRL all have more "diehard" popularity but tennis has broad popularity nationwide. As for swimming, it's really only a big deal during major events like the Olympics and Commonwealth Games.

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post #15 of 49 (permalink) Old 06-19-2010, 11:31 PM
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Re: Are there any countries where tennis is THE #1 sport?

Quote:
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"It is better to be big in many countries than to be the biggest in a few"
Good Point, tons of people love Rugby Union here despite the fact it is not popular in many countries around the world but we focus on it like crazy

Its whats wrong with our sports setup. Focusing on unpopular non Olympic sports. I can see the merits of the GAA but I dunno what merits rugby union has for the country.

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