Should grand slams get rid of junior tennis?

09-10-2012, 07:23 PM
For many young players a junior grand slam is a goal on its own these days: a good result gets you exposure, some hype and thus better sponsorship. All those tennis academies want to have junior champs because they hope parents will bring their kids to them. But we know junior tennis is a completely different ball game and transition to senior tour is not easy it all.

Maybe those youngsters experience what it means to play at Wimbledon etc. a bit too early? Maybe they should "grind out" that first adult Wimbledon main draw instead of being awarded a chance of playing in a slam tournament because they are "talented highly ranked juniors", which to be honest means almost nothing these days?

I think a junior grand slam unnecessarily elevates and glamorizes junior tennis, which is just a school of tennis and nothing more.

Juniors should have their own big tournaments, but WITHOUT that grand slam feel and name. Maybe that would make their goals (and their coaches') a bit more long term. Despite the huge physicality of the current game, I'd encourage them to taste "real tennis" on the futures circuit taking into account that a 16 year old shouldn't play a full season.

The only upside of a junior grand slam that I can see is that juniors play along the absolutely best senior players and they have a chance to learn something because they are so close to some real action. But I'm not sure how much knowledge they can pick up during a slam, how much access they have to the top players and do juniors really have time for it because they are playing their own tournament after all. Maybe they could learn more coming to a slam as ordinary spectators?


Deathless Mortal
09-10-2012, 07:26 PM

09-10-2012, 07:29 PM
:lol: That's very persuasive, D M.

09-10-2012, 07:30 PM
no but they should get rid of women's tennis or at least make separate events.

09-10-2012, 07:51 PM
kids should play at home and women in the kitchen

09-10-2012, 07:56 PM
kids should play at home and women in the kitchen

In the school and ironing.


09-10-2012, 07:59 PM
Sort of agree. Some players do well at juniors and it translates into later success. But overall it's not a great barometer of success. I like the idea of having goals to aspire to and mainly it's the hype they get that makes it annoying. Maybe the media should be better rather than taking the competition itself away.

Sometimes a junior slam can have a great impact - Nadal talks about playing junior Wimbledon in 2002 - the only junior event he player - and falling in love with the club, the tradition and the surroundings. Sounded like that experience was partly the inspiration that for him always made it his goal - who knows if he'd have been as committed to grass as early on if he hadn't played it.

On the other hand for players like Dimtrov I think junior success has been a hindrance (even more so for Donald Young) - such high expectations and hard to deliver.

09-10-2012, 08:03 PM
Many past greats like "Edgerg" and Becker talk about how special it was to play on the centre court and how it helped their mental strength.

today the competition seems tougher. Some probably push themselves too hard in training and get injured as a result. When you win a junior slam these days it doesn't say "guaranteed future star". It just says: "early developed player that might possibly get somewhere but might just as well never be heard of again"

Probably shouldn't get rid of them but the players and everyone else should have a more relaxed attitude to the results. Nothing is decided when you're that early in the career. If you fail in a junior slam the career isn't over. If you win in a junior slam you aren't a guaranteed future pro. The kids need to get that into their heads, often their coaches and parents to

09-10-2012, 09:28 PM
No, you always want to have something big to strive for even as a junior, I think getting rid of junior slams, and say having other tournaments be their biggest tournaments takes away from that. Even though winning them doesn't mean a whole lot having that experiance of playing in a pressure situation helps especially if they play in slams as a pro they won't be as nervous because they've been there before.

09-11-2012, 12:23 AM
yes. junior tour is a joke, winning a major there means nothing.

Johnny Groove
09-11-2012, 12:47 AM
LOL no way.

And lose all that free money?