When is the last time..? [Archive] - MensTennisForums.com

When is the last time..?

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 08:00 PM
... we've all seen a really entertaining MS final? Something truly memorable; something we could term a classic?

I really can't remember a really good one unless I go back a while. Yeah, we've had some decent ones, but nothing truly special.

Maybe it's just me, but I'm kind of losing interest in these events and this all started when the atp decided to eliminate best-of-five finals.

Not only that, but I also suspect (speculate) that players no longer feel the same way either. I may be off on this, but I believe that many events - especially the likes of Rome and Miami - are losing their prestige due to the aforementioned change.

Rome was an enormous event at one point in time and we all remember the great finals like Nadal-Coria and Nadal-Federer. But now it's just another warm-up tourney for RG - Federer shows up, but not in spirit; gets ousted by Gulbis and doesn't even seem to care. I believe that this is all at least partially a result of the declining prestige of the MS tourney.

Do you guys still remember Indian Wells? Ljubicic beat Roddick in the final, but I don't think he would have won that match had it been a best-of-fiver. Ljuba is old and not a great mover, but he put everything he had into those two sets, knowing perfectly well that he had to win both. A best-of-five match would have been a classic comeback from Roddick and a likely five-set victory.

But these kinds of opportunities are wasted now. These finals feel short and insignificant. I think that the fans are getting robbed of great tennis. The players don't seem to care and are just saving up the energies for the grand slam. What are the organizers thinking? Every MS event, to provide a metaphor, feels like the minor leagues. A cheap imitation of the real deal.

I fear that the sport is in serious decay right now and something needs to be done. Bring back the best-of-five final; bring back exciting comebacks and the prospect of long and entertaining matches.

Pirata.
05-02-2010, 08:04 PM
Some good points in this post.

StevoTG
05-02-2010, 08:05 PM
The draws have been partly to blame also. Rafa and Novak have had a couple of thrillers on clay that would have been awesome finals, but they were in the same half.

Fedicilous
05-02-2010, 08:06 PM
By entertaining you mean tight or high-leveled?

Persimmon
05-02-2010, 08:07 PM
... we've all seen a really entertaining MS final? Something truly memorable; something we could term a classic?

I really can't remember a really good one unless I go back a while. Yeah, we've had some decent ones, but nothing truly special.

Maybe it's just me, but I'm kind of losing interest in these events and this all started when the atp decided to eliminate best-of-five finals.

Not only that, but I also suspect (speculate) that players no longer feel the same way either. I may be off on this, but I believe that many events - especially the likes of Rome and Miami - are losing their prestige due to the aforementioned change.

Rome was an enormous event at one point in time and we all remember the great finals like Nadal-Coria and Nadal-Federer. But now it's just another warm-up tourney for RG - Federer shows up, but not in spirit; gets ousted by Gulbis and doesn't even seem to care. I believe that this is all at least partially a result of the declining prestige of the MS tourney.

Do you guys still remember Indian Wells? Ljubicic beat Roddick in the final, but I don't think he would have won that match had it been a best-of-fiver. Ljuba is old and not a great mover, but he put everything he had into those two sets, knowing perfectly well that he had to win both. A best-of-five match would have been a classic comeback from Roddick and a likely five-set victory.

But these kinds of opportunities are wasted now. These finals feel short and insignificant. I think that the fans are getting robbed of great tennis. The players don't seem to care and are just saving up the energies for the grand slam. What are the organizers thinking? Every MS event, to provide a metaphor, feels like the minor leagues. A cheap imitation of the real deal.

I fear that the sport is in serious decay right now and something needs to be done. Bring back the best-of-five final; bring back exciting comebacks and the prospect of long and entertaining matches.

Changing the YEC/TMC/WTF final to best of 3(in 2008) was also a mistake:o

Bazooka
05-02-2010, 08:07 PM
The sport in decline? Well, I agree with you to some point, but the main reason is we need better players to replace Federer and Nadal. Five years have passed and we're watching at the same two big players, only older, and both have reasons to focus on slams alone, so what we need is consistent players that can setup a good clash in MS finals. Murray and Djokovic have not so far delivered what was expected from them, Delpo doesn't look to me like one with the physique to be a top player in many tournaments/year, and Denko is what, 29 and got injured? So who would be the protagonist of that super-final?

The 5 set thing is true, though, but not with the calendar as it stands; if they're not going to improve the calendar I would stay with 3 sets.

andy neyer
05-02-2010, 08:08 PM
MS should eliminate the byes first, imo.

l_mac
05-02-2010, 08:10 PM
Last year's Monte Carlo final was good.

Are we meant to see a "classic" match in a MS event 3/4 times a year?

out_here_grindin
05-02-2010, 08:10 PM
MS should eliminate the byes first, imo.

64 draw is ideal but the byes and the change to a 2 set final is all to appease the top players.

Commander Data
05-02-2010, 08:11 PM
... we've all seen a really entertaining MS final? Something truly memorable; something we could term a classic?

I really can't remember a really good one unless I go back a while. Yeah, we've had some decent ones, but nothing truly special.

Maybe it's just me, but I'm kind of losing interest in these events and this all started when the atp decided to eliminate best-of-five finals.

Not only that, but I also suspect (speculate) that players no longer feel the same way either. I may be off on this, but I believe that many events - especially the likes of Rome and Miami - are losing their prestige due to the aforementioned change.

Rome was an enormous event at one point in time and we all remember the great finals like Nadal-Coria and Nadal-Federer. But now it's just another warm-up tourney for RG - Federer shows up, but not in spirit; gets ousted by Gulbis and doesn't even seem to care. I believe that this is all at least partially a result of the declining prestige of the MS tourney.

Do you guys still remember Indian Wells? Ljubicic beat Roddick in the final, but I don't think he would have won that match had it been a best-of-fiver. Ljuba is old and not a great mover, but he put everything he had into those two sets, knowing perfectly well that he had to win both. A best-of-five match would have been a classic comeback from Roddick and a likely five-set victory.

But these kinds of opportunities are wasted now. These finals feel short and insignificant. I think that the fans are getting robbed of great tennis. The players don't seem to care and are just saving up the energies for the grand slam. What are the organizers thinking? Every MS event, to provide a metaphor, feels like the minor leagues. A cheap imitation of the real deal.

I fear that the sport is in serious decay right now and something needs to be done. Bring back the best-of-five final; bring back exciting comebacks and the prospect of long and entertaining matches.

I agree with you. Two other points that might factor in:

- Fed doesn't care about Non-Slam events much. Fed gets a lot of attention, therefore his lack of effort coulors the events as warm-ups for the Slams.

- Nadal dominates the clay events. Domination is boring, there are 3 clay 1000 that lose excitment due to this.

Priam
05-02-2010, 08:11 PM
A lot of the top players are either injured/bad form/on vacation so that is partly to blame for the crappy MS finals.

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 08:13 PM
By entertaining you mean tight or high-leveled?

Not all best-of-five matches are entertaining, but anytime you get to at least four sets there's some intrigue, I think.

The worst thing about the best-of-three is the potential for a very short match. A two set final is short, period. Paying that much money to watching a two-setter is a rip-off. And even if I'm watching it on tv it's still extremely unsatisfying.

But in a best-of-five match, there's greater potential for the tide to swing one way and then the other. How many times do you see a guy win the first two sets and then crumble with fitness issues and surrender the next two or at least one? Happens again and again in best-of-fives.

But in a best-of-three it's a clean sweep - easy victory. Little intrigue.

So, to answer your question, an exciting match can be both a) very tight, or b) it can involve one player dominating a portion of the match, but later surrendering the momentum to the other player - something, again, that happens that one's fitness is tested.

This is my issue with the current format. The matches are not long enough to truly test out how fit these guys are. So when a player goes down a set and a break he doesn't dig in within himself - he simply gives up.

Watch Ferrer today. Fails to get the break back after the rain delay and just surrenders. Wouldn't happen in a best-of-five match. Though, granted, Nadal would still dominate his fair share of finals - best-of-three or best-of-five.

Commander Data
05-02-2010, 08:13 PM
Last year's Monte Carlo final was good.

Are we meant to see a "classic" match in a MS event 3/4 times a year?

True, but it would have been better best of 5, no?

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 08:17 PM
A lot of the top players are either injured/bad form/on vacation so that is partly to blame for the crappy MS finals.

They do seem like they're on vacation. There's this odd feeling of relaxation on the tour right now - some guys (Verdasco) are really putting in the effort, but many are just passing the time.

My questions to the organizers are this - "why should I be watching"? "why should I care about the sport, at least until the weeks of Roland Garros"? "maybe I should go and watch hockey instead and then come back for the majors later?"

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 08:18 PM
Last year's Monte Carlo final was good.

Are we meant to see a "classic" match in a MS event 3/4 times a year?

I wouldn't mind once or twice. Was last year's Monte Carlo truly a classic?

I don't see anyone talking about it. People are still talking about Rome 2006 and Rome 2005. Miami 2005. Madrid 2005.

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 08:20 PM
The sport in decline? Well, I agree with you to some point, but the main reason is we need better players to replace Federer and Nadal. Five years have passed and we're watching at the same two big players, only older, and both have reasons to focus on slams alone, so what we need is consistent players that can setup a good clash in MS finals. Murray and Djokovic have not so far delivered what was expected from them, Delpo doesn't look to me like one with the physique to be a top player for vey long, and Denko is what, 29 and got injured? So who would be the protagonist of that super-final?

The 5 set thing is true, though, but not with the calendar as it stands; if they're not going to improve the calendar I would stay with 3 sets.

Personally, I would prefer best-of-five finals for some, not all, MS events. I would myself look at Miami, Rome and Shanghai. Year-end Championships for sure.

Madrid, debatable. IW, maybe.

Pirata.
05-02-2010, 08:29 PM
Changing the YEC/TMC/WTF final to best of 3(in 2008) was also a mistake:o

Agreed, this event is supposed to be a Slam-like competition between only the best players, but it seems like a joke in best of three sets.

Priam
05-02-2010, 08:31 PM
To go along with 5-set finals at MS events, I'd like it to return to some MMs too.

fabolous
05-02-2010, 08:32 PM
cyborg, you are spot on about that best-of-five-finals. but we have to face it, they are not tv-compatible and so will never come back.

actually i fear the day will come they play best-of-three in slams. maybe even with the third set in a champions tiebreak.

Jills
05-02-2010, 08:48 PM
MS should eliminate the byes first, imo.

Yeah, good idea. Let's all watch Nadal and Fed demolish a total random 6-2 6-1, while also giving them less recovery time from their last tournament and wearing them out even more.

The season is long enough. The top guys don't need 9 extra matches per year, that they're almost guaranteed to win anyway.

Pointless.

Lopez
05-02-2010, 08:51 PM
Personally, I would prefer best-of-five finals for some, not all, MS events. I would myself look at Miami, Rome and Shanghai. Year-end Championships for sure.

Madrid, debatable. IW, maybe.

The problem with that IMO is the lack of consistency.

Why should some finals be best of 5 and others best of 3? Especially if the ranking points were the same.

Personally I would also like best of five finals, but the calendar would have to be adjusted for that IMO. The current solution is in place to appease the players who complain about the long season but also to cater for the sponsors and try to keep the lenght of the calendar about the same.

Filo V.
05-02-2010, 08:59 PM
Best-of-5-finals won't have any effect on the quality of matches. In fact, the sense of urgency that comes with best-of-3-matches may make that a better option.

Filo V.
05-02-2010, 09:02 PM
Also, byes should be eliminated in every tournament since that is a disadvantage to other players who don't have byes. But that also wouldn't have any effect on the quality of Masters series, and actually would just cause more bad matches with top players beating up bad players, or top players getting upset.

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 09:09 PM
Yeah, good idea. Let's all watch Nadal and Fed demolish a total random 6-2 6-1, while also giving them less recovery time from their last tournament and wearing them out even more.

The season is long enough. The top guys don't need 9 extra matches per year, that they're almost guaranteed to win anyway.

Pointless.

Yeah, I don't mind the byes at all. Seems like a good idea to me.

Filo V.
05-02-2010, 09:09 PM
Long matches don't necessarily=excitement and many times brings the opposite. Long matches can come in 3 sets. Comebacks are not exclusive to 5-set matches, and MS events ARE minor league events compared to majors. They are not majors. Great tennis can be compacted in a couple of hours time, and give the fans their moneys worth. And most important thing to be remember, quality of matches has nothing to do with how long the match goes.

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 09:14 PM
The problem with that IMO is the lack of consistency.

Why should some finals be best of 5 and others best of 3? Especially if the ranking points were the same.

Personally I would also like best of five finals, but the calendar would have to be adjusted for that IMO. The current solution is in place to appease the players who complain about the long season but also to cater for the sponsors and try to keep the lenght of the calendar about the same.

That's a good question, but it was never a logical barrier when we had the spring and fall events as best-of-five, yet the summer MS events as best-of-three (Toronto, Cincy). Keep in mind that the summer stretch has been best-of-three for a long time now.

So, clearly, picking and choosing isn't that much of a problem.

Now, as to which I think should go best-of-five. I choose Rome because a) it's an older event unlike Madrid and is mandatory unlike MC, and b) it fits right in the middle of the clay court season, minimizing any fatigue excuses for RG. Then I'd go with one of IW or Miami - I think it makes sense to go with the latter, going into DC. But some reasons could be brought for the former. I don't have a big preference. We used to have both, so why not at least have one as best-of-five? Of course, I'd welcome the chance to see both returning to best-of-five.

And then Shanghai is a pretty huge event - they would welcome a best-of-five final format, I think. Paris was always small potatoes.

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 09:17 PM
Long matches don't necessarily=excitement and many times brings the opposite. Long matches can come in 3 sets. Comebacks are not exclusive to 5-set matches, and MS events ARE minor league events compared to majors. They are not majors. Great tennis can be compacted in a couple of hours time, and give the fans their moneys worth. And most important thing to be remember, quality of matches has nothing to do with how long the match goes.

You are making a very simple and obvious point. Yes, I know that long matches aren't always good matches.

But classic matches are almost always long matches. Which is why I posed the question: when is the last time we had a classic MS final?

I honestly don't remember a great best-of-three MS final, unless I have to go back years.

Nadal and Djokovic had an amazing semi in Madrid last year. But had that been a final it would have been better if it went five (though I'm not advocating a best-of-five in Madrid for reasons already outlined).

LinkMage
05-02-2010, 09:19 PM
Yeah, good idea. Let's all watch Nadal and Fed demolish a total random 6-2 6-1, while also giving them less recovery time from their last tournament and wearing them out even more.

The season is long enough. The top guys don't need 9 extra matches per year, that they're almost guaranteed to win anyway.

Pointless.

Yeah, let's give top players more advantages to win tournaments by letting them play less matches so they are less tired than the rest of the players. :rolleyes:

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 09:21 PM
Yeah, let's give top players more advantages to win tournaments by letting them play less matches so they are less tired than the rest of the players. :rolleyes:

Top players are more tired than the rest of the players, because they advance deeper into tournaments.

Filo V.
05-02-2010, 09:24 PM
You are making a very simple and obvious point. Yes, I know that long matches aren't always good matches.

But classic matches are almost always long matches. Which is why I posed the question: when is the last time we had a classic MS final?

I honestly don't remember a great best-of-three MS final, unless I have to go back years.

Nadal and Djokovic had an amazing semi in Madrid last year. But had that been a final it would have been better if it went five (though I'm not advocating a best-of-five in Madrid for reasons already outlined).

Nadal and Djokovic were nearly dead after 4 hours. Now you would be telling them to play for what.............7 hours? No, Masters series aren't majors, so they shouldn't have the same rules. Long drawn out matches aren't necessarily better, and actually, they are usually worse because of the ups and downs and players lacking intensity throughout matches. 3-set finals puts players in the position where they know they have to play great early, or go home with the L.

Classic matches are almost always long matches? Nadal and Djokovic played for 3 hours at Hamburg, is that long enough? Wanting 4 and 5 hour matches for events that aren't majors? That is what the majors are for. That would dilute the majors.

I'm making simple and obvious points because there are simple and obvious points as to why 5-set matches and 6 matches in 7 days is silly for MS events. There are plenty of bad 5-set and 3-set MS finals, and it has nothing to do with the sets played.

M4RC
05-02-2010, 09:27 PM
Yeah, let's give top players more advantages to win tournaments by letting them play less matches so they are less tired than the rest of the players. :rolleyes:

Top players have earned their right to enjoy a bye in the 1st round. If those "rest of the players" want the bye, they should gain it playing better in other minor tournaments.

Filo V.
05-02-2010, 09:30 PM
Tsonga-Nalbandian Paris 2008, last years Monte Carlo (for the first 2 sets), Djokovic-Federer Montreal 2007, even Monfils-Djokovic last year Paris (high intensity).

oranges
05-02-2010, 09:33 PM
Please stop using Nadal-Djokovic matches as something that is representative, not even all their matches are like that Madrid one. While at it, stop treating their 4-hour match as a normal 4-hour match, there's a LOT of time-wasting with that duo.

Nichele Hull
05-02-2010, 09:34 PM
Players these days just don't cut it mentally. They don't believe in themselves enough to beat Federer or Nadal(on clay and on hard courts). When they do, it will be an interesting match for a final. The last masters series was lame and todays was no different due to the lack of belief to accomplish a defeat to Nadal that has only been done once or twice a year. Some are a point from beating top players and then collapses mentally and its sad to see the better player lose due to mental fatigue. Best of five matches won't be good if the players are going through three sets every match.

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 09:34 PM
Nadal and Djokovic were nearly dead after 4 hours. Now you would be telling them to play for what.............7 hours? No, Masters series aren't majors, so they shouldn't have the same rules. Long drawn out matches aren't necessarily better, and actually, they are usually worse because of the ups and downs and players lacking intensity throughout matches. 3-set finals puts players in the position where they know they have to play great early, or go home with the L.

When is the last time a best-of-five match went seven hours? These guys are asked to play up to seven best-of-five matches in two weeks of a major. Why can't they play one at a Masters event?

And I really don't see any logic to your claim that best-of-five matches are worse because of "ups and downs". The "ups and downs" are what make these matches great - dramatic and unpredictable.

Lastly, the issue I'm bringing up cannot be simply trumped by alluding to the players. Tennis is a business. Fans are watching. And if the sport is losing that edge, then something must be done about it.

Events like Rome, I believe, are defined and recognized in history by the monumental matches played in their premises. Without that, these events gradually lose their prestige.

Classic matches are almost always long matches? Nadal and Djokovic played for 3 hours at Hamburg, is that long enough? Wanting 4 and 5 hour matches for events that aren't majors? That is what the majors are for. That would dilute the majors.

This would "dilute" the majors? How would it do that? Did this dilute the majors when they did play best-of-five finals going back to 2006 and beyond?

I'm making simple and obvious points because there are simple and obvious points as to why 5-set matches and 6 matches in 7 days is silly for MS events. There are plenty of bad 5-set and 3-set MS finals, and it has nothing to do with the sets played.

I don't have a problem with byes, but I disagree strongly about the other thing.

There's nothing worse, in my opinion, than a straight-set two-setter. It's the most anticlimactic way to end a tournament. It's not money well spent. It allows players like Ljubicic to win events he has no business of winning.

oranges
05-02-2010, 09:35 PM
Top players have earned their right to enjoy a bye in the 1st round. If those "rest of the players" want the bye, they should gain it playing better in other minor tournaments.

No they haven't. This must be the only example in any sport whatsoever that one "earns" the right to gain an advantage over the competition in any other way other than on court/field. Perhaps you've missed the point of sports in general and would do better fanboying a boy/girl band

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 09:38 PM
Tsonga-Nalbandian Paris 2008, last years Monte Carlo (for the first 2 sets), Djokovic-Federer Montreal 2007, even Monfils-Djokovic last year Paris (high intensity).

Pretty good matches. Not classic matches.

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 09:39 PM
No they haven't. This must be the only example in any sport whatsoever that one "earns" the right to gain an advantage over the competition in any other way other than on court/field. Perhaps you've missed the point of sports in general and would do better fanboying a boy/girl band

Not true. In hockey a team gets home ice advantage if they ended the season ranked higher in the standings.

Actually, this is also true of basketball and baseball and probably other team sports.

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 09:40 PM
Players these days just don't cut it mentally. They don't believe in themselves enough to beat Federer or Nadal(on clay and on hard courts). When they do, it will be an interesting match for a final. The last masters series was lame and todays was no different due to the lack of belief to accomplish a defeat to Nadal that has only been done once or twice a year. Some are a point from beating top players and then collapses mentally and its sad to see the better player lose due to mental fatigue. Best of five matches won't be good if the players are going through three sets every match.

Were you stranded on a desert island during IW and Miami? Neither of these guys even made a final.

Besides, how many masters series has Federer been winning lately? When is the last time Nadal beat a top-10 ranked player?

As for fatigue, I don't believe there's anything fundamentally wrong with this generation (well, I could argue a point I've argued before - that contemporary technology encourages incredible shotmaking but awful fitness levels - but I won't go there). However if guys were a bit more used to the best-of-five format maybe they wouldn't be huffing and puffing so much all the time.

If there's a fitness issue perhaps it's best to not excuse it, but deal with it by getting guys to be more fit.

oranges
05-02-2010, 09:42 PM
Not true. In hockey a team gets home ice advantage if they ended the season ranked higher in the standings.

Actually, this is also true of basketball and baseball and probably other team sports.

That's comparable to seeds, not to missing an entire round. You would consider it fine if one the the teams could skip a round in a world championship if they're ranked high enough? I think not.

Filo V.
05-02-2010, 09:44 PM
Pretty good matches. Not classic matches.

Opinion.

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 09:45 PM
That's comparable to seeds, not to missing an entire round. You would consider it fine if one the the teams could skip a round in a world championship if they're ranked high enough? I think not.

Wasn't this done in baseball? There must be a sport that did this.

Honestly, I believe that the bye was a necessary middle ground to appease the top players who do play a lot of tennis. They have a fundamental stake in the success of the game and therefore a big say.

Byes go back a long, long time. It's not like this is a new thing, only invented recently. What they've done recently is incorporate more byes than before.

out_here_grindin
05-02-2010, 09:45 PM
That's comparable to seeds, not to missing an entire round. You would consider it fine if one the the teams could skip a round in a world championship if they're ranked high enough? I think not.

I agree with you but the NFL has byes in their playoffs. Top 2 teams in each conference get byes

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 09:48 PM
Opinion.

Not my opinion. Generally agreed upon/negotiated opinion of tennis fans. Read the boards. Use the search function if you must.

This generally agreed upon/negotiated opinion of tennis fans is what drives the revenue of the ATP. It decides on the way the tour is perceived and the prestige the events take on after certain amount of time.

And, again, there's a strong indication that masters series events are losing the respect of top players. I've never seen players care less than they do now.

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 09:49 PM
I agree with you but the NFL has byes in their playoffs. Top 2 teams in each conference get byes

Thanks - this is what I was thinking of, but couldn't remember exactly.

Filo V.
05-02-2010, 09:51 PM
When is the last time a best-of-five match went seven hours? These guys are asked to play up to seven best-of-five matches in two weeks of a major. Why can't they play one at a Masters event?

And I really don't see any logic to your claim that best-of-five matches are worse because of "ups and downs". The "ups and downs" are what make these matches great - dramatic and unpredictable.

Lastly, the issue I'm bringing up cannot be simply trumped by alluding to the players. Tennis is a business. Fans are watching. And if the sport is losing that edge, then something must be done about it.

Events like Rome, I believe, are defined and recognized in history by the monumental matches played in their premises. Without that, these events gradually lose their prestige.



This would "dilute" the majors? How would it do that? Did this dilute the majors when they did play best-of-five finals going back to 2006 and beyond?



I don't have a problem with byes, but I disagree strongly about the other thing.

There's nothing worse, in my opinion, than a straight-set two-setter. It's the most anticlimactic way to end a tournament. It's not money well spent. It allows players like Ljubicic to win events he has no business of winning.

Why should they play a best-of-5 at a Masters series? It isn't a major. Why should they put their bodies through that? It isn't easy to win 3-set matches in itself. We don't need more for events that aren't on the level of the grand slams.

Great matches are matches with consistent energy and high quality, which lacks in many 5-set matches. Monumental matches have nothing to do with them being 5-sets.

The players are the one who provide the fans the opportunity to watch. If they aren't happy, you probably won't be either. The fans support the players, but it's the players that drive the sport.

Do 5-set Masters series dilute majors? Yes, because it makes going through a major winning 5-set matches every other day and sometimes back to back days that much less of an amazing feat. It would make it common place and regular, and not special.

A straight-set 3 setter is worse because it is delaying the inevitable and is more drawn out and boring.

Lastly, Ljubicic deserved the win at Indian Wells because he beat every opponent placed in front of him and he was the one at the end who didn't lose. Really simple there.

Nichele Hull
05-02-2010, 09:51 PM
Were you stranded on a desert island during IW and Miami? Neither of these guys even made a final.

Besides, how many masters series has Federer been winning lately? When is the last time Nadal beat a top-10 ranked player?

As for fatigue, I don't believe there's anything fundamentally wrong with this generation (well, I could argue a point I've argued before - that contemporary technology encourages incredible shotmaking but awful fitness levels - but I won't go there). However if guys were a bit more used to the best-of-five format maybe they wouldn't be huffing and puffing so much all the time.

If there's a fitness issue perhaps it's best to not excuse it, but deal with it by getting guys to be more fit.

In a Masters Series final is what I was referring to ;) Every one is beating Federer left and right but who is beating Nadal on clay is also what I was referring to as well. Even when Federer cared a little in the Masters, he wasn't losing to the Bennateau's of the tour.

Filo V.
05-02-2010, 09:52 PM
Byes are unfair to lesser ranked players.

Filo V.
05-02-2010, 09:55 PM
Not my opinion. Generally agreed upon/negotiated opinion of tennis fans. Read the boards. Use the search function if you must.

This generally agreed upon/negotiated opinion of tennis fans is what drives the revenue of the ATP. It decides on the way the tour is perceived and the prestige the events take on after certain amount of time.

And, again, there's a strong indication that masters series events are losing the respect of top players. I've never seen players care less than they do now.

No matter how many agree or not, that is still an opinion. Other people may feel differently.

The players drive the fans. Without players, there would be no fans. So actually, since they are the ones actually on the court playing, I believe their opinion definitely holds as much if not more weight than someone random on the computer.

Masters series aren't majors, and I don't think they are losing respect from the top players, it's that their focus is on majors (outside of Indian Wells and Miami), as it should be.

Caralimon
05-02-2010, 10:06 PM
Byes are unfair to lesser ranked players.

Qualifyings are also unfair then.

What I don't really understand is why the ATP had to implement both 3-setters finals and byes at the same time. One would think that those byes were actually a resource to maintain long finals, as the players would have to play one match less.

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 10:12 PM
Why should they play a best-of-5 at a Masters series? It isn't a major. Why should they put their bodies through that? It isn't easy to win 3-set matches in itself. We don't need more for events that aren't on the level of the grand slams.

My first answer to your questions is that because they can - they're athletes; they're payed a lot of money and it is the result and prestige of the event that is developed by means of its matches that allows the sport to develop further.

Your attitude towards the masters event is emblematic of the problem. You say: "why should the athletes do this? It is not a major..." - meaning that the event is something inferior and probably not at all that important.

And while I agree, technically, that a masters event will always be inferior, it is nonetheless necessary, in terms of business and advertising sense, for the organizers and sponsors to make sure that events on the ATP tour have a strong prestige. What is currently happening to their events is bad for business - these events are purely "minor leagues."

What is happening at this point is that the ATP tour is very much at the mercy of the majors - a practice tour. You may not see a problem with that, but I do. This was not the case years ago when people were genuinely excited about these tournaments and were in awe of events like Rome where players played exciting five-set matches (heck, even exciting four-set matches).

And the players wanted to come and they wanted to play that five-setter, because they were aware of the precedent matches - those history making matches defined the event for what it was. Those matches that made the event important and worthwhile. Every final match was unlike the other matches in the event - it was a bigger deal, indicative of a grander stage and greater demand on the athlete.

People ragged on Miami was calling itself the fifth major. But at least they tried. I admire them for their business sense. I don't know why this sense of competition has been taken away from the tour. It will lose them money, unless they adjust.

Great matches are matches with consistent energy and high quality, which lacks in many 5-set matches. Monumental matches have nothing to do with them being 5-sets.

I don't think many people would agree with you on this one. The best tennis that I see is always in the majors.

Now, this doesn't mean that best-of-three matches are incapable of being great. I'm not sure why you're missing my point on this. Rather what I am saying is that best-of-three matches are more likely to be absolutely terrible.

Consider a one-sided best-of-three match - it's a quick and easy two sets. Now, what's the worst thing that can happen if they tack on one more set? Absolutely nothing. Option a) another one-sided set. Option b) sudden turnaround and a competitive match once again. There is nothing to lose for the fan in the stands. The fan in the stands wants to see more tennis.

Now, let's consider the other kind of match. A competitive match. You're saying that we have plenty of exciting best-of-three matches. So let's say that we have two guys tied at a set apiece, then player x beats player y in set three. It's an exciting match so far. So why not have another one or two sets? Why would the fans mind? What would be the downside?

Would the quality of the match go down? I don't think it would. The tactics would simply change. Players would play with the fact in mind that they have to have enough energy for a potentially long match. That would not necessarily make for a bad match.

At this point, the best matches are still occurring in the majors. Is one truly to suggest that the quality of tennis is worse in those events than in the potentially quick-and-easy masters matches?

You will still have two-set matches in masters events. All I am suggesting is that some Masters events should incorporate best-of-five finals, which would equal to probably no more than four extra best-of-five finals a year. All for the potential to make the occasional more special and for the opportunity to see more finals like Rome 2006 and Madrid 2005. Why not?

The players are the one who provide the fans the opportunity to watch. If they aren't happy, you probably won't be either. The fans support the players, but it's the players that drive the sport.

Nonsense post. At no point am I recommending a complete and utter slavery of the players. The players are pampered enough as it is. They make huge bucks and the fans are the ones who are paying. Never before have there been fewer best-of-five finals than there are now. The players are extremely well taken care of.

Do 5-set Masters series dilute majors? Yes, because it makes going through a major winning 5-set matches every other day and sometimes back to back days that much less of an amazing feat. It would make it common place and regular, and not special.

This is not backed up by any logic. I asked you if best-of-five finals in some masters events in the past diluted, as you said, the majors. They didn't. The majors were always the majors. However the masters events were not always pathetic warm-up events. They were strong, proud events that nested their share of classic moments.

A straight-set 3 setter is worse because it is delaying the inevitable and is more drawn out and boring.

I've already addressed this above. A straight three-setter is "more tennis", which to any fan is "not a problem". Additionally, the additional set always provides the opportunity for a comeback.

Lastly, Ljubicic deserved the win at Indian Wells because he beat every opponent placed in front of him and he was the one at the end who didn't lose. Really simple there.

He also would have won very simply, as you put it, in Madrid in 2005. But that event's final was best-of-five; he lost to Nadal; and now we know it to be a classic match. Rather than boring shit.

Har-Tru
05-02-2010, 10:15 PM
Wow, a good thread on GM.

Agree completely.

CyBorg
05-02-2010, 10:22 PM
No matter how many agree or not, that is still an opinion. Other people may feel differently.

The players drive the fans. Without players, there would be no fans. So actually, since they are the ones actually on the court playing, I believe their opinion definitely holds as much if not more weight than someone random on the computer.

I value the opinion of the players as well. However I believe that they would side with what I recommend if they sat down and considered all of the variables.

And, no - I don't agree with your dynamic. Without fans there would be no players. With fans, there will always be players, because there will always be athletes desiring to make money by doing what they like.

This doesn't translate to - pick one out of two and go with what they think. No, one side shouldn't slave to the other. But the game has to make business sense. When it doesn't, both sides lose.

Forehander
05-02-2010, 10:45 PM
No matter how many agree or not, that is still an opinion. Other people may feel differently.

The players drive the fans. Without players, there would be no fans. So actually, since they are the ones actually on the court playing, I believe their opinion definitely holds as much if not more weight than someone random on the computer.

Masters series aren't majors, and I don't think they are losing respect from the top players, it's that their focus is on majors (outside of Indian Wells and Miami), as it should be.

Best of 5 in finals, not every match

Pirata.
05-02-2010, 11:26 PM
My first answer to your questions is that because they can - they're athletes; they're payed a lot of money and it is the result and prestige of the event that is developed by means of its matches that allows the sport to develop further.

Your attitude towards the masters event is emblematic of the problem. You say: "why should the athletes do this? It is not a major..." - meaning that the event is something inferior and probably not at all that important.

And while I agree, technically, that a masters event will always be inferior, it is nonetheless necessary, in terms of business and advertising sense, for the organizers and sponsors to make sure that events on the ATP tour have a strong prestige. What is currently happening to their events is bad for business - these events are purely "minor leagues."

CyBorg, this is a good post and you should feel good. :worship:

n8
05-03-2010, 03:05 AM
Putting all other arguments aside, I think best of 5 finals in a best of 3 tournament aesthetically unpleasant. The finals of virtually all other sports are purposely longer. Plus it makes Grand Slams and Davis Cup more special if they are the only events with best of 5 matches.

Action Jackson
05-03-2010, 03:15 AM
Not going to happen. The ones that weren't 5 set finals were Cincy and Montreal/Toronto, the other ones were at one point.

The TMS events are warm ups for the Slams and the year end champs, except for Indian Wells/Miami which serve the purpose to make sure the North American market is catered for when it comes to major events.

As I said many times, the ATP won't change the calendar and the top players allegedly wanted more cash to play 5 set finals, so we have the compromise.

Action Jackson
05-03-2010, 03:17 AM
Putting all other arguments aside, I think best of 5 finals in a best of 3 tournament aesthetically unpleasant. The finals of virtually all other sports are purposely longer. Plus it makes Grand Slams and Davis Cup more special if they are the only events with best of 5 matches.

Hardly any one plays Davis Cup these days and many 5 set finals outside Slams have been classic matches.

CyBorg
05-03-2010, 05:52 AM
Not going to happen. The ones that weren't 5 set finals were Cincy and Montreal/Toronto, the other ones were at one point.

The TMS events are warm ups for the Slams and the year end champs, except for Indian Wells/Miami which serve the purpose to make sure the North American market is catered for when it comes to major events.

As I said many times, the ATP won't change the calendar and the top players allegedly wanted more cash to play 5 set finals, so we have the compromise.

I doubt it'll happen as well. When IW/Miami both went to best-of-three that was a bad sign.

.-Federers_Mate-.
05-03-2010, 06:25 AM
tennis needs 5 set finals, much more drama and excitement for the fans. The players can put their bodies on the line, they train everyday, ffs they are professional athletes not a bunch of pansies. no more byes aswel, the best players shouldn't be affected. Top guys are getting injured alot not because of the schedule but because they don't put enough effort in..and that needs to change ;)

Mechlan
05-03-2010, 08:17 AM
Agreed on most counts. Masters Series events have definitely suffered from moving to best of 3 finals. And this does have an impact on both viewer and athlete in terms of the relative importance such a tournament merits. I'd love it if they brought back best of 5, but I'm not holding my breath.

Sunset of Age
05-03-2010, 01:11 PM
Wow, a good thread on GM.

Agree completely.

+1. :yeah:
Thanks for starting this thread, OP. You deserve a lot of goodreps for this.

stebs
05-03-2010, 01:28 PM
Yes I totally agree with CyBorg on this one. The five set finals were a big part of what leant to the prestige of the masters events. Of course, nobody is suggesting they should be comprable to slams in terms of their importance and that would never happen. However, the need to win a five set match in order to complete a victory in IW, Miami, Rome, MC, TMC etc... is part of what made them special events in the previous years.

I am also in total agreement about another post you made in this threat CyBorg when you mentioned the excitmenet a fourth set brings and the potential quickness of a two set match. Five set matches have the propensity to throw out beatdowns but even in that case it takes a more special performance to crush another top player in three straight sets than it does to blitz them in two.

Five set finals in masters series is the loss I lament the most from tennis over the last 10 years. It makes the events worth less, it makes the events less fun to watch and it makes the finals less interesting as one off matches in and of themselves.

Merton
05-03-2010, 01:30 PM
The issue is that the ATP administration does not care about satisfying core tennis fans. Or it cares, but it is well down on their priorities. Top players are better off with byes and best of 3 finals. The organizers have an easier time selling TV rights for best of 3 finals. End of the discussion.

By the way, thank you for this thread.

Action Jackson
05-03-2010, 01:35 PM
It reconfirms what we already knew Merton and stebs along with cyborg are clearly right on this issue.

BlueSwan
05-03-2010, 02:38 PM
Virtually all of the changes implemented to the game over the last 10 years have been terrible. The ONE good thing was slowing Wimbledon down, but then they went ahead and slowed it down way too much. Surely one can find a middle-ground between the serve-fests of the 90's and the "green clay" of today.

CyBorg
05-03-2010, 06:42 PM
The issue is that the ATP administration does not care about satisfying core tennis fans. Or it cares, but it is well down on their priorities. Top players are better off with byes and best of 3 finals. The organizers have an easier time selling TV rights for best of 3 finals. End of the discussion.

By the way, thank you for this thread.

All of this makes sense to me - I am not completely 'in the know' about the ATP's thought process and the business decisions involved.

However I still think that they are ignoring an important variable - one that will creep up on them. It's the effect that this toning down of the atp masters series events is creating - the events are taking on a new image; one of distinct inferiority to grand slam events.

And this imagine of inferiority is what I think will be costing them money in the long run - the top players are underperforming and therefore hurting the events, saving themselves for the grand slam. And the casual fans will also be less enthused to see the occasional short and dull final.

The Indian Wells Masters struggled to find a sponsor only recently. The ATP cannot possibly pretend that everything is all right with the sport and that their model maximizes their revenue.

However most people on boards such as these don't share my strong vocal concern about this. This leads me to think that either a) the atp is right and the fans, most fans, don't mind, or b) the fans are losing interest in these events, but more in terms of mellow indifference rather than militant objection. It might be subtle and gradual.

The ATP has their monetary figures in front of them, so they probably know their situation best. But long term I don't see how they'll be attracting new fans with this product.

Filo V.
05-03-2010, 06:56 PM
Excitement has nothing to do with how many sets a match goes. That isn't a good enough reason to extend MS finals to 5 sets.

Filo V.
05-03-2010, 07:01 PM
I know in America, the last French Open, Wimbledon, and the last Australian Open all had ratings better than they have been in the past, so I don't buy the whole "the sport is dying" rhetoric. The US Open (until the rained delayed finals) had big ratings here in the states. The fact is, MS events aren't majors, so if people are expected the players to have the same intensity and that 5 sets will somehow make the matches better, they are kidding themselves a bit.

Bobby
05-03-2010, 07:21 PM
I know in America, the last French Open, Wimbledon, and the last Australian Open all had ratings better than they have been in the past, so I don't buy the whole "the sport is dying" rhetoric. The US Open (until the rained delayed finals) had big ratings here in the states. The fact is, MS events aren't majors, so if people are expected the players to have the same intensity and that 5 sets will somehow make the matches better, they are kidding themselves a bit.

I don't agree with that. With the money they are earning, they should play with the same intensity in the MS events. At the moment we have eight good weeks of tennis per year and that's not right. People who buy the tickets have the right to see high quality matches and that's not happening now. I don't want to point any fingers but it seems that Federer for example uses MS tournaments as his personal practise hour and a way to consume energy for bigger occasions.

Filo V.
05-03-2010, 07:38 PM
I don't agree with that. With the money they are earning, they should play with the same intensity in the MS events. At the moment we have eight good weeks of tennis per year and that's not right. People who buy the tickets have the right to see high quality matches and that's not happening now. I don't want to point any fingers but it seems that Federer for example uses MS tournaments as his personal practise hour and a way to consume energy for bigger occasions.

They SHOULD play with the same intensity, true. But it's naive to think they actually will, and it's even more naive to think that going to 5-set finals and 6 matches a week is going to change anything. That will make it worse, because more players will tank or not show up or get injured. High quality matches are definitely deserved by ticket holders, but that is not connected to 5-set finals or having players playing 6 matches in a week or having 500 tournament finals going 5 sets. The number of sets has nothing to do with quality of matches.

Henry Chinaski
05-03-2010, 07:46 PM
I've barely watched the clay MS events so far.

I think that might be due to the fact that clay tennis is so horrendously piss-weak right now than anything though.

Apart from that, I agree with the OP.

I must say when I was expanding my tennis viewing from just the slams to more of a year-round interest I definitely saw the likes of Kitzi and Basel as more prestigious than the average MM event. I suspect their best of 5 finals were partly responsible for that.

oranges
05-03-2010, 07:48 PM
Excitement has nothing to do with how many sets a match goes. That isn't a good enough reason to extend MS finals to 5 sets.

Well, I think the opposite. The fact that it seemed the easiest solution to some other problems was no reason to abolish 5-set finals in the first place. Having a best of three final for a masters and TMC is a joke. Was even for those were it was always played like that, now it's just everywhere. Perhaps those who strongly disagree with the change should all purposefully boycott watching them at all. We'll live missing a few finals we're not too excited to watch anyway and there would be a good enough reason to reconsider the disastrous decision.

Filo V.
05-03-2010, 07:52 PM
Well, I think the opposite. The fact that it seemed the easiest solution to some other problems was no reason to abolish 5-set finals in the first place. Having a best of three final for a masters and TMC is a joke. Was even for those were it was always played like that, now it's just everywhere. Perhaps those who strongly disagree with the change should all purposefully boycott watching them at all. We'll live missing a few finals we're not too excited to watch anyway and there would be a good enough reason to reconsider the disastrous decision.

TMC should be a 5 set final, I agree there.

MS, I don't think so, because they aren't majors and that isn't going to actually change anything. 5-set finals won't change the other issues, won't make players more intense, and won't help the quality of bad matches.

If you boycotted watching and paying the events, there is going to be more than just the tournaments caving in and going back to 5-sets going on. Meaning, they are going to run out of money, go bankrupt, and then the players, who don't want 5-set finals or 6 days a match weeks, will likely revolt, because pay would be cut.

GugaF1
05-03-2010, 07:54 PM
Tennis has always being truly about the majors. Master series and the MC are apetizzers, that are supposed to bring a good taste of the big time event, but no quite it, that is how it has been and problably will be.

To me tennis is much about the mood you are in when watching it as well. Sometimes I can have a greater enjoyment and interest watching some random first rounders journeyman playing than a semi final with big names. Tennis is kind like listening to music, it can always be good and enjoy it depends on your fine tune state of mind.

In a high level tennis Match, there is always something to be enjoyed. Of course is easier in some with more drama and some extra background story, rivarly, sometimes even if artificial.. can help to draw you in. But a lot of times if you are not enjoying a match it can be more up to your lack than the actual match.

oranges
05-03-2010, 09:35 PM
TMC should be a 5 set final, I agree there.

MS, I don't think so, because they aren't majors and that isn't going to actually change anything. 5-set finals won't change the other issues, won't make players more intense, and won't help the quality of bad matches.

If you boycotted watching and paying the events, there is going to be more than just the tournaments caving in and going back to 5-sets going on. Meaning, they are going to run out of money, go bankrupt, and then the players, who don't want 5-set finals or 6 days a match weeks, will likely revolt, because pay would be cut.

I think you don't want to understand the point of a 5-set masters final for some odd reason. It's been argued for by various people numerous times already. It doesn't have to be a slam, nothing else is, not DC, not TMC. Best of five is the format you want if you want to add prestige, difficulty and IMO attraction to a final. It's not designed solely for slams. Never was. They made masters MMs with most of the field present. The way it's going, there won't be much difference from many 500 tournaments, since at the same time of basically downgrading masters, they are attempting to push this new category up. As a result, we'll have a bunch of more or less mediocre tournaments and the players will be more fatigued than ever. Marvelous, isn't it.

Players would revolt and the ATP would go bankrupt, but they'd all persist on keeping this joke of finals? :lol: In essence, it's very simple. It's a choice between cramming as many events as possible and making high profile events what they should be.

CyBorg
05-03-2010, 09:42 PM
Tennis has always being truly about the majors.

100% wrong.

CyBorg
05-03-2010, 09:59 PM
I think you don't want to understand the point of a 5-set masters final for some odd reason. It's been argued for by various people numerous times already. It doesn't have to be a slam, nothing else is, not DC, not TMC. Best of five is the format you want if you want to add prestige, difficulty and IMO attraction to a final. It's not designed solely for slams. Never was. They made masters MMs with most of the field present. The way it's going, there won't be much difference from many 500 tournaments, since at the same time of basically downgrading masters, they are attempting to push this new category up. As a result, we'll have a bunch of more or less mediocre tournaments and the players will be more fatigued than ever. Marvelous, isn't it.

Players would revolt and the ATP would go bankrupt, but they'd all persist on keeping this joke of finals? :lol: In essence, it's very simple. It's a choice between cramming as many events as possible and making high profile events what they should be.

I wonder why the ATP thinks so little of its own events. I don't know what their thought process is.

For those who aren't aware, pro tennis in the open era gradually shifted from a time characterized by parallel tours and extreme competition between tournaments for prestige (especially in the 1970s) to an extremely standardized tour (starting in 1990 and now peaking from 2007-onwards).

An example for the 1970s was the Riordan tour and its connection to Jimmy Connors. We can also look at World Team Tennis which attracted players away from the French Open. Also noteworthy is the fact that the highest paid events throughout the 1970s were not the majors, but stuff like The Pepsi Grand Slam. Best-of-five matches were common. All highly paid, competing, events had best-of-five matches. Dallas WCT had all best-of-five matches (three rounds).

In the 1990s we probably saw the final bit of competition for the ATP, which was the Grand Slam Cup (organized by the ITF). That event paid the largest sum of money I think ever in history - not only to the winner, but pretty much to anyone who showed up to play a match. Guys made millions by just showing up. I don't have the numbers on me, but it was insane. Eventually this event was eliminated, or rather combined with the Masters Cup. The problem with this event was that it had no history and attracted players solely on the strength of the money. You could probably say the same thing about the Pepsi Grand Slam and other high profile events that came and went, because they had no real history.

However, if we look back, there were events that were not majors but still had both prestige and history. Rome was, for a time, bigger than the French Open. Miami had a 128-man draw more than once. The US Pro, in Boston, went back many years and was still big in the 1970s. The WCT was a big deal, especially the Dallas finals. So it was not all about the majors. And while Dallas and Boston are gone, Monte Carlo is still old and storied, Rome goes back a century or more, as does Canada and Cincinnati. IW and Miami are almost 25 years old and were, at one point, making a lot of noise (now reduced to a whimper).

Personally, I'm quite okay with the more standardized organization to professional tennis. It makes it easier on everyone, including the fan to evaluate the players. But I think that in recent years we've gone a bit too far. The tour is oddly static, I would say even, dumbed down to the public.

The conundrum I see here is if we truly accept this kind of dumbing down of the tour, the I see very little reason to have so many events on the tour all year round. If these events matter so little then why:

- make so many Masters events mandatory - it makes no sense; the atp sends a mixed message .. either these events are warm-ups or they are important .. make up your mind .. the players seem oddly reluctant to be there, showing up not because they want to, but because they have to (by the rulebook).

- why not have an off-season .. the players don't give a shit about these events and nor does it seem that the casual fans do .. the majors (the ones that truly seem to matter) end at the beginning of fall - so why even continue? To make money? But what money can you possibly pretend to be making if you do such a piss poor job of marketing your own tour?

Vida
05-03-2010, 10:32 PM
well it has to be some money, otherwise they wouldn't put up such a resistance to shortening the season. I mean many things could be made better, including best of 5 in masters finals, less wear and tear, less injury, more competitive matches etc.

what was the ratio behind dumping best of 5 in the first place? maybe it had something to do as to balance with the length of the season.

CyBorg
05-03-2010, 10:52 PM
well it has to be some money, otherwise they wouldn't put up such a resistance to shortening the season. I mean many things could be made better, including best of 5 in masters finals, less wear and tear, less injury, more competitive matches etc.

what was the ratio behind dumping best of 5 in the first place? maybe it had something to do as to balance with the length of the season.

From what I've read

- top players prefer best-of-three; don't want to overplay

- organizers believe that most fans are fine with best-of-three

IMO, this is not fully thought through. The problem is the lack of forward-thinking. The top players just think about themselves and what's best for them.

Action Jackson
05-04-2010, 12:32 AM
Considering the ATP is biased towards tournament directors and these tournament directors and owners are notoriously short sighted and tend to think of the buck at the cost of everything else.

This being the case, then shortening of the season is going to be very difficult as tournaments need to be cut, but the ATP is meant to be a union between players and tournament directors, it's not an equal balance and the top ones unsurprisingly look after their own interests first.

ATP are very reactionary as an organisation, then when they do something it normally takes too long or it's poorly done aka RR. Changing the ranking system and not explaining it clearly. A lack of accountability, there are rule changes that can work but the ATP don't think it through properly.

rocketassist
05-04-2010, 12:48 AM
Only Federer and Nadal's opinions matter to the ATP now. Joke organisation.

rocketassist
05-04-2010, 12:56 AM
AMS events are going downhill and are just glorified MMs. Take out the bye and bring back the 5 set final.

How many great TMS matches were there last year you can remember? Nadal-Djokovic in Madrid was the only really good one.