while I would love to see Richard play at least one of the lead up to the US Open series ( hmm , ok the Los Angeles one
). I totally agree that rest is a good thing, and this is a good break in the schedule to relax , enjoy some time at home with his friends, and work on fitness. It will be important for the rest of the season
as for the small crowds- I have only been to the LA event during the US Open series - and yes , early round crowds are pretty small. But lately ,their draw has been pretty lackluster - with the big names -one year Roddick, then Del Potro , and this year , Querrey - all pulling out with injury so late they could not get a replacement.
As for IW , and the empty stadium - I have to argue there . The IW tournament is packed , day in and day out. The big stadium that gets all the tv coverage is huge - and the corporate boxes down low sit empty because often corporate big wigs are in the hospitality suite - eating and drinking . And they don't allow other people to sit there , moving down from the "cheap seats ". Silly really - if the seat is not being used, what 's the harm in letting someone sit in it ? But they don't. There are also 8 other courts at IW - all packed with action from great singles and doubles - and the practice courts are easy to get to and watch. So while it may look like no one is there, I can tell you , those outer courts - and the top of the big stadium - are full to the brim ! Unlike the French Open and Wimbledon , you do not need a specific ticket for each stadium - so a seat to the big stadium acts as a grounds pass . Thus , people holding tickets to the main arena move around more than at other venues.