Hilarity in Houston.. [Archive] - MensTennisForums.com

Hilarity in Houston..

The
04-18-2005, 02:57 AM
Hiya,
I, being a member of the Westside Tennis Club, have had the opportunity to watch the Qualifying tournament for the US Clay Court Championships over the past few years and something idiotic happened this year.

THE RED CLAY COURTS WEREN'T READY.

Yes, thats right. At Westside there are both red and green clay courts and the red clay wasn't ready so guess where they had the qualifying...the green clay.

Every year a few weeks before the qualifying starts the Mcingvales have the grounds people from Roland Garros come in and resurface the courts for the upcoming tournament. This year that did not happen. After the tournament the club just forgets about the red clay and thus the quality of the surface degenerates to shit. So this year on the first day of qualifying we had Alex Tursonov playing some other guy on a green clay court while right next to it the grounds people from the club were working on the court.

Also today apparently Roddick and Horna were practicing on the red clay and when Horna slid for a ball a section of the line came straight out of the ground. As my dad tells it, Roddick then took a tile and went into the clubhouse looking for Linda Macingvale.

I wonder how this will turn out?

Fee
04-18-2005, 03:01 AM
(Dmitry Tursunov or Alex Bogomolov?)

That does sound kind of funny, and almost dangerous. Keep us posted, this could get interesting....

Chloe le Bopper
04-18-2005, 03:04 AM
Boo! This is totally why Adam Chadaj lost :(

;)

The
04-18-2005, 03:04 AM
Sorry, I meant Dmitry.

It has been so far, this could be really bad for the club.

I have played a lot on the stadium court after last years masters and the club went all cheepo on the surface, the top layer of the court began peeling off about 1 week after the matches ended.

The
04-18-2005, 03:06 AM
Boo! This is totally why Adam Chadaj lost :(

;)

It's understandable, those green clay courts suck ass and don't play anything like the red clay.

Chloe le Bopper
04-18-2005, 03:07 AM
It's understandable, those green clay courts suck ass and don't play anything like the red clay.
Did you see Chadaj play? :D

Probably not. He lost early :(

The
04-18-2005, 03:09 AM
Did you see Chadaj play? :D

Probably not. He lost early :(

I wouldn't know him if I saw him to be honest.

I did see Scollville Jenkins play however. I think he was playing Ivo Minar but I'm not very sure.

star
04-18-2005, 03:11 AM
So they didn't bring in the French groundskeepers this year? :confused:

I mean.... If not, I hope someone took notes last year. :lol:

The
04-18-2005, 03:12 AM
So they didn't bring in the French groundskeepers this year? :confused:

I mean.... If not, I hope someone took notes last year. :lol:

Well with the line tiles coming out of the ground I don't really think they did take notes.

Deboogle!.
04-18-2005, 03:12 AM
:eek: if Andy is mad at the McInvales, it must be so bad the world is about to end!!! :haha: Are the courts going to be ready by the time the matches are supposed to start tomorrow!!?

Chloe le Bopper
04-18-2005, 03:14 AM
I wouldn't know him if I saw him to be honest.

I did see Scollville Jenkins play however. I think he was playing Ivo Minar but I'm not very sure.
Adam is almost 15 feet tall and has a blonde fro. And plays left. You can't miss him!

http://www.atptennis.com/en/players/playerprofiles/default2.asp?playersearch=chadaj

No picture, but stats to confirm that he's almost 15 feet tall :D

The
04-18-2005, 03:20 AM
:eek: if Andy is mad at the McInvales, it must be so bad the world is about to end!!! :haha: Are the courts going to be ready by the time the matches are supposed to start tomorrow!!?

Well they would have to be. The question is whether it would actually be decent to play on or if it is going to just fall apart.

Earlier today Agassi went out to practice on the red stuff. He walked on the court and 10 minutes later he was off.

On Saturday I was speaking to someone whos son plays on the Westside pro team (a collection of futures and challengers players) and he said that while 2 of the red clay courts had been resurfaced it was too soon to play on them because the clay was too wet and if they were to play on it the would ruin the court, so most of the pros opted to play on the crap green stuff.

One cool thing though is I ate lunch at the club on Saturday and saw the following:
James Blake, Jurgen Melzer, Mardy Fish, Todd Martin, Luis Horna, some blonde guy that is really really tall, Thomas Blake, Agassi, Grosjean, and a couple of the qualies guys. That was kinda cool

The
04-18-2005, 03:21 AM
Adam is almost 15 feet tall and has a blonde fro. And plays left. You can't miss him!

http://www.atptennis.com/en/players/playerprofiles/default2.asp?playersearch=chadaj

No picture, but stats to confirm that he's almost 15 feet tall :D

HAHA, 14 foot 10 inches and 72 pounds?? He must be the quickest guy on tour and distant relative of Gumby.

Deboogle!.
04-18-2005, 03:22 AM
Well they would have to be. The question is whether it would actually be decent to play on or if it is going to just fall apart. wow, that's just unbelievable. So bad. I don't understand why they would let this happen! Last year, the biggest thing I took away from the tourney during the time I spent there was how well it was run. This is just really surprising that the Macks would let this happen.

Earlier today Agassi went out to practice on the red stuff. He walked on the court and 10 minutes later he was off. what's funny is that a little while before you posted, I was talking to MisterQ on MSN and I said "you know, there are pics of Andre practicing today but he's not practicing on red clay!!" We both though it was bizarre. Now it all makes sense *light bulb goes off*

So bad. The guys should've picked up and gone across town to River Oaks - sounds like the new red clay courts there were pretty nice and slow like the European stuff. Maybe some of the guys will say "fix this for next year or we don't come back" (yes, that's my wishful thinking talking :p) Very cool about your lunch though :)

star
04-18-2005, 03:24 AM
Well with the line tiles coming out of the ground I don't really think they did take notes.

:rolleyes: This could be bad. Very bad.

It won't help the tournament if all the red clay guys are pissed about the surface.

tennischick
04-18-2005, 03:25 AM
this is not the first time that Mattress Mac's people messed up the preparation of a court for an important tourny. what gives :confused:

Chloe le Bopper
04-18-2005, 03:27 AM
HAHA, 14 foot 10 inches and 72 pounds?? He must be the quickest guy on tour and distant relative of Gumby.
Rumour has it that he doesn't have to run. He just sticks his arms out and leans over every now and then. He's impossible to lob too. The best bet is to keep the ball really low, since he might struggle a little with those.

The
04-18-2005, 03:29 AM
:rolleyes: This could be bad. Very bad.

It won't help the tournament if all the red clay guys are pissed about the surface.

Thats what I was thinking, the first year they get the likes of Grosjean, Massu, etc. etc. to add credibility to their tournament and this has to happen.

I remember last year they had Kendrick playing a match on the stadium court and they had the big screen up with the score and serve speed. This year they are still laying the surface by the first day of qualies.

This isn't the first time Westside has had surface issues either. During the 2003 Masters Cup a lot of players had complained because the court had a major slant on either side.

Especially with the way things have been around there lately with all the teaching pros being fired and stuff I am not suprised at all by this.

The
04-18-2005, 03:30 AM
Rumour has it that he doesn't have to run. He just sticks his arms out and leans over every now and then. He's impossible to lob too. The best bet is to keep the ball really low, since he might struggle a little with those.

I bet he serves 160 mph and his kick serves are unreturnable.

Deboogle!.
04-18-2005, 03:33 AM
This isn't the first time Westside has had surface issues either. During the 2003 Masters Cup a lot of players had complained because the court had a major slant on either side. But at least with that, it was the ATP that was in charge of the surface. This time it sounds like it's the Macks who really dropped the ball. As you said, the first time they were really able to add some better players to the field and something like this happens. I really hope the tourney ends up going off ok and especially that no one gets hurt.

Becca, that's just :eek: AMAZING about Chadaj... I can see why you love him so much!

star
04-18-2005, 03:35 AM
Thats what I was thinking, the first year they get the likes of Grosjean, Massu, etc. etc. to add credibility to their tournament and this has to happen.

I remember last year they had Kendrick playing a match on the stadium court and they had the big screen up with the score and serve speed. This year they are still laying the surface by the first day of qualies.

This isn't the first time Westside has had surface issues either. During the 2003 Masters Cup a lot of players had complained because the court had a major slant on either side.

Especially with the way things have been around there lately with all the teaching pros being fired and stuff I am not suprised at all by this.

Ya gotta know where to cut corners, and the surface isnt' the place esp. when Jim is selling players on the idea that his tournament is a legitamate warm up for the clay season. I mean... have a crap website... whatever, but this isn't building the tournament for the future.

PaulieM
04-18-2005, 03:36 AM
Adam is almost 15 feet tall and has a blonde fro. And plays left. You can't miss him!

http://www.atptennis.com/en/players/playerprofiles/default2.asp?playersearch=chadaj

No picture, but stats to confirm that he's almost 15 feet tall :D
:eek: OMG! :haha:

Chloe le Bopper
04-18-2005, 03:38 AM
I bet he serves 160 mph and his kick serves are unreturnable.
They occasionally leave marks on hardourts. This one time one even got stuck and didn't bounce back up. I think they called a let.

Tennis Fool
04-18-2005, 03:38 AM
Thanks for the report. However, that's why the Americans get for skipping MC. Hope they get out of the first round of the French.

What's Massu doing over there?

The
04-18-2005, 03:39 AM
They occasionally leave marks on hardourts. This one time one even got stuck and didn't bounce back up. I think they called a let.

Yeah but I leave ball marks on hard courts too. I bet Adam uses an extended racquet too because he really does *need* that extra leverage on that serve.

I bet Coria's 2nd serve seems like a drop shot to him.

The
04-18-2005, 03:40 AM
Thanks for the report. However, that's why the Americans get for skipping MC. Hope they get out of the first round of the French.

What's Massu doing over there?

Massu is getting paid.

Deboogle!.
04-18-2005, 03:42 AM
Massu is getting paid.Most of them are. There were people chattering last year about Andy and Andre (who was scheduled to play but pulled out b/c of his hip) getting upwards of a few hundred thousand each as appearance fees. They certainly don't play there for nothing :lol: (then again most of these small tourneys pay a lot. Last year in Scottsdale it was in the local newspaper that Andre got $300,000 - but pulled out b/c of his hip, Andy got $150,000 and the rest of the field got to split another $150,000 :eek:....)

The
04-18-2005, 03:44 AM
Most of them are. There were people chattering last year about Andy and Andre (who was scheduled to play but pulled out b/c of his hip) getting upwards of a few hundred thousand each as appearance fees. They certainly don't play there for nothing :lol: (then again most of these small tourneys pay a lot. Last year in Scottsdale it was in the local newspaper that Andre got $300,000 - but pulled out b/c of his hip, Andy got $150,000 and the rest of the field got to split another $150,000 :eek:....)

I know, i was just saying that because in my opinion getting paid would be Massu's only motivation for going.

Deboogle!.
04-18-2005, 03:45 AM
I know, i was just saying that because in my opinion getting paid would be Massu's only motivation for going. He's also coming back from an injury and I saw somewhere one of his fans say that perhaps he'd want to ease into the clay season by playing a lesser field, and it's also closer to Chile. That makes sense, but I'm sure there's a financial reason as well - there always is :)

darnyelb
04-18-2005, 03:48 AM
Andre was practicing on red clay this afternoon I'm pretty sure.

Tennis Fool
04-18-2005, 03:51 AM
Well, if I thought I had no chance at that French, I'd go for the money too :D

-ernie-
04-18-2005, 03:55 AM
I am going to this! :bounce: Im playing in major zone this weekend during the tourny!

superpinkone37
04-18-2005, 04:01 AM
wow...really interesting to hear whats going in in Houston, thanks for the info :)

Chloe le Bopper
04-18-2005, 04:14 AM
Yeah but I leave ball marks on hard courts too. I bet Adam uses an extended racquet too because he really does *need* that extra leverage on that serve.

I bet Coria's 2nd serve seems like a drop shot to him.

I meant dents, not marks ;)

Most serves seem like a drop shot to him :sad:

NATAS81
04-18-2005, 04:33 AM
Also today apparently Roddick and Horna were practicing on the red clay and when Horna slid for a ball a section of the line came straight out of the ground. As my dad tells it, Roddick then took a tile and went into the clubhouse looking for Linda Macingvale.
This could mean Coria's argument at MC might have held water, though the venues differed.

Fee
04-18-2005, 05:41 AM
One cool thing though is I ate lunch at the club on Saturday and saw the following: James Blake, Jurgen Melzer, Mardy Fish, Todd Martin, Luis Horna, some blonde guy that is really really tall....

Alexander Popp returns!!! :woohoo:

Deboogle!.
04-18-2005, 05:43 AM
Alexander Popp returns!!! :woohoo::haha: :haha:

Anyway, new article posted at the Houston Chronicle says the repairs went late into this evening:eek:
--------
Stadium surface gets late repairs
By DALE ROBERTSON
Copyright 2005 Houston Chronicle

The anticipated doubles debut of Andre Agassi and Jim Courier in the U.S. Clay Courts Championships kicks off Gallery Furniture Stadium play at 7 p.m. tonight.

Agassi and Courier are facing Luis Horna, the eighth seed in singles, and Martin Garcia on the newly refurbished center court that has yet to played on.

The clay had been laid back down after the Masters Cup hard court was jackhammered out, but problems with the limestone subsoil necessitated an 11th-hour emergency makeover.

The repairs lingered into Sunday evening, preventing any kind of dress rehearsal for the surface.

The doubles match will be followed by Mardy Fish vs. Robby Ginepri. Qualifying is earlier in the day.

Two seeded players, No. 6 Sebastien Grosjean and No. 7 Jurgen Melzer, are both playing first-round matches on the Simmons Court behind the stadium. The Austrian Melzer meets Mariano Puerta of Argentina not before 4 p.m.

Becarina
04-18-2005, 05:45 AM
good to hear :)

The
04-18-2005, 05:52 AM
I suspected it was some kind of limestone issue, thats what you get for being in Texas. That doesn't explain the lateness of preparing the outside courts though.

Devotee
04-18-2005, 06:03 AM
excerpt from Houston Chronicle newspaper:

Another Houston event?

Jim Courier's acceptance of Andre Agassi's invitation to play with him in Houston could serve a dual purpose.

Could he also announce that a Delta Tour of Champions event will be played at Westside in the fall, giving the club an event to replace the Masters Cup, now in Shanghai?

"Can't say yet," Courier said, being coy.

Expect an announcement before the week is out. And chances are it won't be to tell us a deal didn't get done with Jim and Linda McIngvale.

Courier was once the No. 1-ranked player on the 35s tour in 2004 but has participated in just one of the three Delta events this year.

The
04-18-2005, 06:07 AM
excerpt from Houston Chronicle newspaper:

Another Houston event?

Jim Courier's acceptance of Andre Agassi's invitation to play with him in Houston could serve a dual purpose.

Could he also announce that a Delta Tour of Champions event will be played at Westside in the fall, giving the club an event to replace the Masters Cup, now in Shanghai?

"Can't say yet," Courier said, being coy.

Expect an announcement before the week is out. And chances are it won't be to tell us a deal didn't get done with Jim and Linda McIngvale.

Courier was once the No. 1-ranked player on the 35s tour in 2004 but has participated in just one of the three Delta events this year.

Well if Westside got a tour of champions event it would be very helpful. What else would that stadium get used for? Thanks for the article.

Smankyou
04-18-2005, 06:10 AM
haha. He is cutting corners. Typical businessman.

Action Jackson
04-18-2005, 06:11 AM
I wonder if they will win ISG event again at the ATP awards after this effort?

The
04-18-2005, 06:16 AM
I wonder if they will win ISG event again at the ATP awards after this effort?

I'll bet you that they won't.

Action Jackson
04-18-2005, 06:17 AM
I'll bet you that they won't.

Unless Jim hands out some major coin and they don't need to do that in Bĺstad. :)

ugotlobbed
04-18-2005, 06:18 AM
thats aussie clay...not green clay.....its like sand...i play on that all the time at westside...its weird..its like playing at the beach

bad gambler
04-18-2005, 06:21 AM
when i read the thread title i thought it was referring to the tennis tournament that was about to take place

ok ok only joking, but that was an intersting read, cheers

The
04-18-2005, 06:24 AM
thats aussie clay...not green clay.....its like sand...i play on that all the time at westside...its weird..its like playing at the beach

Well there is two different types really. We have the 3 darker ones in the front which the surface is really thin and it plays like a hardcourt but atleast you can slide on it. The ones in the back are hydroclay or whatever that is, both suck and those courts certainly weren't in the proper condition to play a professional match on.

You're a member of westside too?

Tricky_Forehand
04-18-2005, 09:04 AM
Adam is almost 15 feet tall and has a blonde fro. And plays left. You can't miss him!

http://www.atptennis.com/en/players/playerprofiles/default2.asp?playersearch=chadaj

No picture, but stats to confirm that he's almost 15 feet tall :D

:lol: I must be seeing a different Adam Chadaj around then when I've seen him wandering around at Challengers. I can confirm the blonde fro but...tall :scratch:

I do a search for any recent threads mentioning Alex and this is what popped up :lol:

If someone has never seen Dmitry or Alex before and you only glance it can be hard to tell the difference sometimes :). I know that Alex cut all his hair off but not sure about Dmitry.

So was Alex still having to play on Green clay today? Ridiculous for all guys involved!! :mad:

Action Jackson
04-18-2005, 09:12 AM
Great organisation skills.

Tricky_Forehand
04-18-2005, 09:16 AM
some blonde guy that is really really tall

That would be Alexander Popp...someone I know is very happy to see him back. I wanted to read the rest of the thread to see if she responded but she hasn't.

Becarina
04-18-2005, 09:17 AM
:lol: I must be seeing a different Adam Chadaj around then when I've seen him wandering around at Challengers. I can confirm the blonde fro but...tall :scratch::


Ive seen him at Mc Donalds

Tricky_Forehand
04-18-2005, 09:25 AM
That's not unusual. A lot of people go to McDonalds. Maybe the athletes change their eating habits when they get higher up in the rankings and realize they need healthier diets but I can't count how many of the professionals that I see make a beeline for fastfood.

Becarina
04-18-2005, 09:28 AM
That's not unusual. A lot of people go to McDonalds. Maybe the athletes change their eating habits when they get higher up in the rankings and realize they need healthier diets but I can't count how many of the professionals that I see make a beeline for fastfood.


was a joke at first, but true. There are too many pizza places in Austin for Andy to resist...I can only imagine how the others sufer

Tricky_Forehand
04-18-2005, 09:30 AM
Sorry :o . Too late/early for me to catch a sarcastic comment ;)

Tricky_Forehand
04-18-2005, 09:49 AM
Adam is almost 15 feet tall and has a blonde fro. And plays left. You can't miss him!

http://www.atptennis.com/en/players/playerprofiles/default2.asp?playersearch=chadaj

No picture, but stats to confirm that he's almost 15 feet tall :D

:haha: :haha: OMFG...you weren't bullshitting about the ATP stats!! I thought you were being a smart ass :lol:

Adam is no more than maybe 5'6 if that

This was perfect way to end my day :haha: :haha:

CooCooCachoo
04-18-2005, 11:02 AM
:lol: Great job Houston :worship:

sigmagirl91
04-18-2005, 01:05 PM
OMG!! The world is coming to an end.

PaulieM
04-18-2005, 01:32 PM
was a joke at first, but true. There are too many pizza places in Austin for Andy to resist...I can only imagine how the others sufer
can you imagine poor taylor or irakli trying to resist that :eek:

sigmagirl91
04-18-2005, 01:52 PM
can you imagine poor taylor or irakli trying to resist that :eek:

They wouldn't, which is why Pizza Hut posted special hours on their windows. Irakli and Taylor can only come between the hours of 3 and 7; the rest of the time is for everyone else.

tangerine_dream
04-18-2005, 03:51 PM
I am very surprised that the Macs dropped the ball on this one. Especially since Jim is so keen on trying to lure more South Americans to play his clay tournament. Not good at all. :sad:

onewoman74
04-18-2005, 04:09 PM
What a crap way to start a tournament!!! Jim should be ashamed!!!

smucav
04-18-2005, 04:23 PM
Well if Westside got a tour of champions event it would be very helpful. What else would that stadium get used for? Thanks for the article.The new Houston WTT team, the Houston Wranglers (featuring Steffi Graf), is going to play itsr home matches at Westside.

Mac is also trying to get the year-end WTA championships to move to Houston.

Socket
04-18-2005, 04:29 PM
That's not unusual. A lot of people go to McDonalds. Maybe the athletes change their eating habits when they get higher up in the rankings and realize they need healthier diets but I can't count how many of the professionals that I see make a beeline for fastfood.
McDonald's California Cobb Salad is actually quite good. I'm sure that's what all the tennis pros eat. :angel:

alfonsojose
04-18-2005, 05:16 PM
The new Houston WTT team, the Houston Wranglers, is going to play their home matches at Westside. Mac is also trying to get the year-end WTA championships to move to Houston.
:eek: :lol: i can see Myskina and Leena D complaing about the courts, if they can make it to the year-end WTA championships with the Belgian Babes back in business. And Sharapova, well, I'm more russian than hers :tape:

TheBoiledEgg
04-18-2005, 07:30 PM
:rolls: at what happened to the red clay for qualies :tape:

thats what you get when you get Mickey Mouse to do the tourn organising :rolls:
A Mickey Mouse event if ever that was one.

its not as if Mattress just found out he had an event
plus its not that easy preparing a clay court (its not like making beds :p)

Action Jackson
04-18-2005, 07:38 PM
thats what you get when you get Mickey Mouse to do the tourn organising :rolls:

Mickey Mouse would have done a better job.

aam
04-18-2005, 09:30 PM
i was out there saturday to watch some qualifying, and the red clay courts that were "ready" were messed up big time, lines popping in and out of the clay. it was really pathetic. i overheard someone saying that the reason the courts weren't ready was because there was a delay on the shipment of the clay from france, but that is no excuse.

sigmagirl91
04-18-2005, 09:32 PM
OK....that excuse cannot be bought with my dime. Next one, Jim.....

Pea
04-18-2005, 10:06 PM
What do you expect? All the money went to the players to attend the tourney and not the groundworkers.:o

Devotee
04-18-2005, 10:16 PM
The person who was tournament director for years, Kris Young, left for another job. Maybe that had some effect. However, that is NO excuse! :explode:
This tourney now has higher visibility because better players are entered.

The
04-18-2005, 10:25 PM
The person who was tournament director for years, Kris Young, left for another job. Maybe that had some effect. However, that is NO excuse! :explode:
This tourney now has higher visibility because better players are entered.

And they had to go and fuck up their best chance. Typical Jimmy Mac.

kiro
04-19-2005, 06:54 AM
lol.
I agree to GWH, even Mickey Mouse could do better than that...so this might be a Donald Duck tournament...

RogiFan88
04-19-2005, 02:53 PM
The person who was tournament director for years, Kris Young, left for another job. ...

can you blame him? :p

Action Jackson
04-19-2005, 02:59 PM
can you blame him? :p

As TBE said laying down a claycourt isn't as easy as making mattresses.

TheMightyFed
04-19-2005, 03:25 PM
When will this MattressMc stop to be ridiculous ? How does he get such confidence from the tour people ? Because he knows Bush Sr ?
Did the ATP people get free matresses for all their families?

KoOlMaNsEaN
04-19-2005, 08:54 PM
:lol:

Deboogle!.
04-21-2005, 05:40 AM
Not much to say to this article except..... :o
---------------
On the surface, they are major problems
Red clay courts bring complaints; McIngvales likely to try green version for '06 tournament
By DALE ROBERTSON
Copyright 2005 Houston Chronicle

Because the players are seeing red, Linda McIngvale sounds resigned to thinking green.

The well-intentioned but pricey and logistically maddening efforts to make finicky French red clay work for the U.S. Men's Clay Court Championships at McIngvale's Westside Tennis Club may soon be abandoned. Beset by myriad problems with soft spots that cause dreadful bounces and slick patches that represent a danger to the players, the club is contemplating a major change for the 2006 tournament.

"The ATP has suggested we consider green clay," Linda McIngvale said. "We're going to look at the possibility."

In the past, the exotic red clay, eponymous with Roland Garros and the French Open, has served both the club and the tournament well. But the latest ordeal of changing from the Masters Cup hard court back to the terre battu (literally, "beaten earth") has been a comedy of errors, many of them the unforced kind.

Except nobody's laughing, certainly not the skittish players, McIngvale or the beaten-down Westside grounds crew, which has worked into the wee hours every evening trying to improve the consistency of the playing surface.

Acting as the tournament director herself this year, McIngvale issued a mea culpa, saying: "We know the courts aren't right, and I personally apologize for that. We've set a very high standard for ourselves here, so we aren't satisfied, either. It's important that everybody understands how much it matters to us, and that we're doing everything we can to get them exactly right. We've had our people working all night. I haven't left the club before 3 a.m."


Little outward criticism
McIngvale said she had expected Frenchman Sebastien Grosjean, a first-time participant in the event, to be the most hyper-critical, given his pedigree. Instead, he has been a helpful resource, offering ideas on how to make emergency repairs. Player criticism has, in fact, been remarkably muted — at least for the public's ears — but that has more to do with the affection the pros have for Linda and her husband, Jim, the prominent discount furniture impresario "Mattress Mack."

The pros thought highly enough of the Clay Courts as an event to have voted it one of the two best International Series tournaments on the ATP Tour in 2004.

"They've put tens of millions (of dollars) into this sport," Andre Agassi said diplomatically. "While the court is difficult for all of us, we're also all better off for having them involved with this game. I hesitate to highlight a negative when there have been so many positives."

But tennis is business and business is business. There's not much tennis players loathe more than unpredictability, especially if it's under their feet.

Andy Roddick is as close to the McIngvales as anyone. When he was asked after his first singles match Tuesday if the Gallery Furniture Stadium Court had become at least "acceptable," his reply was, "We played a match on it."

Following his win over Robby Ginepri on Wednesday night, he said: "It was still a factor. But I'm trying to take the attitude it is what it is. You can just try to deal with it the best you can and hope it doesn't affect a crucial point."

There's no doubt the red clay makes for the prettiest backdrop, or that it screams legitimacy because it's the clay of Roland Garros, the Grand Slam tournament every ground-stroking maestro with ochre-stained shoes dreams of conquering before he dies. But the vast majority of American clay courts are green. While they are perfectly fine, they are somewhat drab in appearance.

The McIngvales were lauded for stepping up and sparing no expense for "real" clay when they landed the Clay Courts in 2001. Four red clay courts already were in place. But five more were needed, and the McIngvales brought the Roland Garros experts back to reprise their earlier handiwork.


Painstaking process
Maurice Lambri, the man in charge of the project for the company, Supersol, and his men lived here for weeks. Fifty-two containers full of limestone subsoil and hundreds of bags of the crushed brick clay had to be shipped from France to the Port of Houston. Then, when the first conversion from the Masters Cup cement back to clay was necessary, the Supersol team returned en masse.

But this year the gents weren't able to come, McIngvale said. So Westside tackled the job in house, and things went badly from the beginning.

"It's a very complicated process," McIngvale said, "much moreso than the green clay requires. We have some of those (courts), too, so we know."

The red clay also hasn't been the star magnet the McIngvales had hoped as none of the super-elite European clay-court specialists have yet deigned to play Houston.

"We're not getting players because of the red clay, so it's probably time to rethink what's best for us and for the tournament," McIngvale said.

Which isn't called the U.S. Men's Red Clay Court Championships.

Devotee
04-21-2005, 05:58 AM
Not much to say to this article except..... :o
---------------
On the surface, they are major problems
Red clay courts bring complaints; McIngvales likely to try green version for '06 tournament
By DALE ROBERTSON
Copyright 2005 Houston Chronicle

Because the players are seeing red, Linda McIngvale sounds resigned to thinking green.

"We're not getting players because of the red clay, so it's probably time to rethink what's best for us and for the tournament," McIngvale said.

Which isn't called the U.S. Men's Red Clay Court Championships.


sounds like it's green courts for next year

Deboogle!.
04-21-2005, 06:06 AM
sounds like it's green courts for next yearyep, sounds like it.. and the sad thing is these guys will still play... :banghead: :o

Action Jackson
04-21-2005, 06:10 AM
Just some unimportant news for those who care.

Houston will be moved again and will be before Monte Carlo in 06 and not afterwards.

Yes, the organisation can't be faulted here. I mean there weren't any major stars of the claycourt game playing here initially and won't be now.

star
04-21-2005, 12:27 PM
awwww Green clay. :sad: :sad:

Westside used to be a green clay tournament on the WTA circuit.

I'd hate to see it go to green again. But my god.... shipping the limestone subsoil adn the clay into the Houston harbor must be enormously expensive. So now Mac is lookng at the debt service to a stadium that's only going to be used once a year AND an expensive surface. The guy's in a hard place.

But I just want to say :inlove: Grossjean!!! What a very very nice guy. :)

euroka1
04-21-2005, 12:51 PM
Money drives all!! You'd think the matress fortune could be put to better use.

The
04-21-2005, 01:21 PM
Damnit, that means that I won't have my favorite surface to play on after this year :-[

Deboogle!.
04-21-2005, 02:24 PM
Just some unimportant news for those who care.

Houston will be moved again and will be before Monte Carlo in 06 and not afterwards.

Yes, the organisation can't be faulted here. I mean there weren't any major stars of the claycourt game playing here initially and won't be now.I don't think it's unimportant news. It's probably just misplaced wishful thinking on my part, but I hope Houston permanently being before Monte Carlo encourages at least some of these guys to go there after.

Actually, what I would hope some of the players would say is "if it's on green clay we won't play anymore" but I know that's just not in the realm of reasonable expectations, sadly.

The, you said you (or your family) were a member of Westside? maybe it would be worth someone making a phone call saying you really enjoy being able to use the only real red clay courts in the US and that you think it would be a big loss to the club and the tourney? maybe it wouldn't be worth it, but either way it's only a phone call :)

tennischick
04-21-2005, 03:07 PM
why were the "French experts" not able to come? :confused: and are they the ONLY group of experts in the world who know how to lay down the terre battu or are there other experts that Mattress couple could have consulted :confused: is it that the French experts were not able to come or did Linda think she could do the job herself? :confused:

this is embarrassing to say the least. Linda has failed miserably as a tournament manager. i too applaud the diplomacy of Andre and others but more than likely they have been given a gag order against talking to the media.

these people need to go back to just being tennis fans and let others take on the job of running the tournament. the ATP is right to ask them to go back to green clay bec there are enuf local experts that at least they can get that right :rolleyes:

Devotee
04-21-2005, 03:12 PM
I'd hate to see it go to green again. But my god.... shipping the limestone subsoil adn the clay into the Houston harbor must be enormously expensive.


Is all that stuff (fifty-two containers full of limestone subsoil and hundreds of bags of the crushed brick clay) shipped over from France every year or was that just the initial setup?

Devotee
04-21-2005, 03:14 PM
is it that the French experts were not able to come or did Linda think she could do the job herself? :confused:

The French experts were not able to come.