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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-22-2017, 06:18 AM Thread Starter
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Real time draw data for Slams

I need some help, if anyone can provide it, I'll be very grateful.

Turns out draws for Grand Slams in real time are very hard to come by these days. For the regular internet user, this is not visible, you just navigate and read what you see, but if you need the data, downloading a site or reading it with an automation won't give you the actual data. For Slams, IBM has made sure the data cannot be copied. PDFs copied text in Adobe Reader DC now leads to just garbage in any text reader.

So, the live rankings will be suffering until I have a solution. I can either input data somewhere manually, or find some web resource which provides draw data in real time, and which can be copied by the automation and actually parsed (must include seeding, qualifying, wild cards, full player names, country, everything).

Any help will be much appreciated if you know some website that is unlike Flashscore, or some real time xml resource, or anything.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-22-2017, 10:08 AM
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Re: Real time draw data for Slams

Hello Slasher,

Maybe I have misunderstood the problem, but for example you can't leech a page like this one, with HTTP requests : Draws | Official Site of the 2017 US Open Tennis Championships - A USTA Event ?

Looking at the code of the page, I guess the content is generated dynamically after the page is loaded, but one easy way to get the draw could be using some browser component in an executable, and pilot the browser to get the content of the draw.

I'm mainly used to MS Visual Studio, and I have used several time their browser component to get the content of some sites too complicated to get by simple HTTP request, if you want I can give you some sources for it.

Sorry if I didn't understood correctly the problem.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-22-2017, 11:09 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Real time draw data for Slams

I already considered this solution. However, long term I think it's a bad idea. Here are the main problems.

1. The backend system, if you've been following the live rankings since the start, is MS Excel. VBA won't be able to get dynamic content from a website. I am still researching this, but am unaware of a way yet.
2. This solution will work for US Open 2017, but will probably not for US Open 2018 (yearly site changes almost always happen). And it will surely not work for any other Slam, which have a different website and structure the data quite differently. So, I will have 4 constantly changing parsers. If every year I have to change the parser 4 times, I'm better off with manual excel sheets.
3. Martin12 already helped with the names. They are not full names, but thankfully, the ATP code is in their link. Again though, this solution won't work for the other Slams.

zjtennis suggested wikipedia as a source, which thankfully has both non-dynamic content and a unitary structure for all Slams. But is it reliable enough and is it updated real time?
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 08-22-2017, 11:17 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Real time draw data for Slams

I can also make public the manually updated draw sheet which is parsed by the backend and allow all of us to update it across different timezones. Of course sabotage is possible in this case.
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