Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: in a Lounge at times ;)
Becker questions current ATP schedule
Don't think it has been posted:
Becker Says Streamlined Schedule Would Promote Player Rivalries
By Richard Pagliaro, 08/08/2002
While some longtime tennis fans long for the days where riveting rivalries between Bjorn Borg, Jimmy Connors and John McEnroe were consistent championship climaxes before giving way to serve-and-volley showdowns between Boris Becker and Stefan Edberg, others celebrate the depth on today's ATP Tour that produced eight different champions in the eight Grand Slams prior to Lleyton Hewitt's Wimbledon win.
Asked to assess the current state of the ATP Tour, Becker believes that time — time for young players to develop and a schedule that permits players to take time off from the tour — is the most crucial element necessary in developing player personalities and more men's rivalries.
"The schedule right now is so full that these young players don't really have a time to breathe, they don't have an offseason, and they're really in this system where they have to play constantly every week," Becker said. "Therefore, it's very hard to let their heart and soul out on the court every single time they go out."
The three-time Wimbledon winner said a streamlined schedule that permitted the top players to play fewer tournaments would allow players to enter events playing at their physical peak and promote the type or rivalries that women's tennis has produced in the past.
"This (player schedules) is one of the reasons you have very clear rivalries (in women's tennis)," Becker said. "The Williams sisters, you have Capriati, Davenport, hopefully Kournikova one day. On the other hand, they play 14 tournaments a year, 14 or 15. They gear for the Slams, maybe another handful where they really want to win. On the men's side, top guys play 20, 25 events. It's impossible to play that many tournaments in your top form."
For Becker, the solution is simple: reducing the quantity of tournaments on the ATP scheduled would increase the quality of tennis.
"We talked about the issue for years and years," Becker said. "Obviously, there needs to be a change of schedule. There needs to be less tournaments. You see top guys playing more each other, and that's the way you start with the rivalries in competition."
Evil Queen of Suspense
aka wise Yoda (the New and Improved read Better Looking and Vain Version )
"Follow your bliss and don't be afraid, and doors will open where you didn't know they were going to be."