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Old 05-18-2014, 12:38 AM   #1
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Default What is your wish for a revamped tennis season?

I feel that the tennis calendar and the point system distribution in the tour needs some overhaul. Keep in mind that it is impossible to change the Slams dates because ATP cannot control their schedule. Now, you are the ATP president, and you are a former grass-courter and you feel that it is travesty that the grass season is so short and you would like to bring carpet back and you are in charge of creating a schedule and the ranking system for 2016 season. As the president of the ATP, how do you please everybody that is so used to the calendar and the ranking system for a long time and the players complains that the tennis season is too long? Go.

I’ll start with my suggestion.

I would keep the ATP Masters 1000 series events but I would make some changes. I feel that 6 of 9 Masters 1000 is being played on hard court. I feel that this is unbalanced and skew the ranking. Before I make these changes, I noticed that there are two back-to-back Masters on the clay and hard court. These are: Madrid/Rome for the clay and Canada/Cincinnati with a week gap right before the Grand Slam. I think that this is a formula model we should follow.

Now, if we could make a request for the French Open to agree for their date to be held one week earlier, creating a 4-week gap. This will create not just one grass Masters but two Grass Masters 1000 events back to back, Halle/Queens with a week gap before Wimbledon.

---------|Roland Garros|-------------|
250 clay events|250 grass events|250 hard court events
ATP 1000 Madrid|ATP 1000 Masters Halle |ATP 1000 Canada
ATP 1000 Rome|ATP 1000 Masters Queens|ATP 1000Cincinnati
250 clay events|250 grass events|250 hard court events
Roland Garros|Wimbledon |US Open

If this is the model we can follow for the warm-up events leading to grand slams, I am sure that the players and the fans won’t mind having. This leads us to what would become of the three remaining Masters. I would make a small change: I would switch Madrid to Monte Carlo so therefore, MC/Rome for the clay warm-up events.

More on Madrid later. I want you to divert your attention to Australian open. I would just start the tennis with a bang with a Masters 1000 event for a hard court. I would like to see this event to be held in Perth as it makes sense for all players to get together in Perth for a season opening ATP 1000 Masters then a week of 250 event before Australian Open.

That leaves us with 2 more Masters and I would keep the Masters event in Indian Wells and Miami on a traditional March date. This creates a void with two fall series Masters in Shanghai and Paris. This is where my introduction of a new ranking system comes in. The creation of a new series called Optional Masters 1000 . This does not replace ATP 500 events.
Optional Masters is an event that came from the idea on how to improve players’ overall needs. This meets the criteria on the players wish list of a shorter tennis calendar to ease the pressure of retaining the ranking for each week.

Optional Masters series creation is an ATP 1000 points with a 32-draw event, rather than 48 or 56 draw event. This is not your normal tournament format, it is a round-robin format consists of 8 groups of 4 players. Three of its first 4 days are a robin round matches with a quarterfinals on Friday-Sunday. The top 96 ranked players are required to participate at least one of three Optional Masters per year, no wild card, and no qualifiers. Once they confirm their participation, they are ineligible to participate in other Optional Masters event. One of three Masters consist of each surface representatives: grass, clay and hard court event from where each player can choose to play. It can be held during the non-peak season. The definition of peak season is the Masters events leading up to Grand Slams and Indian Wells/Miami. This peak season is January, March, May/June and August. Non-peak season is February, April and July and September after U.S. Open. This is where Optional Masters come in. February is the month where no Optional Masters will take place so therefore, three opportunities are in April, July and September. Clay Masters in April, Grass Masters in July and Hard Court Masters in September. The top 96 players must declare their commitment at least one Masters of their choice at the start of the year to give the fans of their favorite players a chance to make a such trip to the events months in advance. The ATP points could award 1000 points to the winner, 600 points to the finalist, 300 points to the semi-finalist, and 150 points to the quarterfinalist. For the players who failed to qualify to the quarterfinals will earn 10 points for the participation and another 25 points for a win in the robin round.

The ranking system would be kept with 4 Grand Slams, 9 Masters, 1 Optional Masters with 4 count of best tournament with 3 ATP 500 commitments requirements, at least one after U.S. Open. The Olympics could count as one 500 With a catch, the Optional Masters points earned will start counting toward the ranking the moment all 3 Optional Masters has been played, meaning, points won in April will not be in effect until September, right after Masters has been played, nor the points won in April will not be dropped until after September the year after, right after the Optional Masters has been played on an equal footing.

The player who choose to declare their Optional Masters to a grass event in July is ineligible to participate on Clay and Hard Court Optional Masters event and this gives the players a mandatory break twice a year. They are ineligible to participate in a challengers event when the Optional Masters is on.

The location of Optional Masters will be Madrid for clay in April, Newport for grass in July and Shanghai for hard court in September.

Now, this brings us to a Fall Series for October, I would reintroduce a carpet to the ATP calendar consists of 250 and 500 events with a Masters 1000 to be held in Paris and this will be a non-mandatory event and be placed in 500 category with an option of putting this in non-countable tournament and this is not Optional Masters as it is a separate entity. And I would retain the World Tours Finals in November. This WTF can be played on an indoor hard court.

Last edited by coolboarder : 05-18-2014 at 12:56 AM. Reason: Failed to create table, did color instead
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Old 05-18-2014, 01:35 AM   #2
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Default Re: What is your wish for a revamped tennis season?

Basically: replace a couple of hard court masters with grass court ones. Preferably American ones, say Miami and Cincinnati.
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Old 05-18-2014, 01:49 AM   #3
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Default Re: What is your wish for a revamped tennis season?

You'd probably have to tear down two blocks of houses to expand Queen's to a Masters 1000.
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Old 05-18-2014, 01:51 AM   #4
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Default Re: What is your wish for a revamped tennis season?

I want to see a complete revamp, including a Masters and Grand Slam in South America. Something like:

January: Same
February: A couple weeks of European 250's and 500's. Indian Wells 3rd week of February, Miami 4th week (make them both 1 week events)
March: The South American Swing, with a Masters Event in Buenos Aires
April: Grand Slam in Sao Paolo (Clay), 250's in Europe
May: Same as it is currently
June: Same, but with a Grass Masters, and Wimbledon goes into the 1st week of July
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Old 05-18-2014, 02:42 AM   #5
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Default Re: What is your wish for a revamped tennis season?

Perfect season:

4 GS winners in one year.

Getting this old era prolongued so Olderer can stay in the top 4

Rise of some good young guns like Thiem, Kachanov, Kyrgios, Garín, Zverev, Chung, Nishioka.

Argetnina winning the Davis Cup.

Bring back the carpet. Give a relevant part to the season to indoor courts, to Pais TMS and to the TMC.

A TMS in grass.

Olderer winning 4 to 6 titles. Fossil winning 1/2 titles.

Benneteau, Muller, Darcis, Mayer F, Mayer L, Mahut, Hewitt, Stepanek, Berlocq, Karlovic and Lorenzi winning a 250 title.

Lu vulturing 4 challengers in Far East Asia.

Nestor, Mirnyi, Paes and Roger Vasselin winning GS. The Ratiwana GOATS winning a 250
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Old 05-20-2014, 10:04 PM   #6
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Default Re: What is your wish for a revamped tennis season?

If I was head of the ATP I would revamp the Masters 1000 series. Most of the Masters 1000 events feel like warm ups to the majors (by both players and fans) and don't generate half as much attention to tennis as they should. Yet despite feeling like warm up events, if a player won all 9 masters events he would have 9000 ranking points which is more than someone who Achieved the ultimate - winning all four grand slams.

I would like to see Indian Wells, Miami and Shanghai changed to being ATP Majors (2 week long, best of 5 sets every round, same ranking points as the grand slams) and the other 6 masters events downgraded to 500 point non mandatory events.

Obviously to make these 3 events the same as majors some changes to the calendar would have to take place. They would include moving Indian Wells to the 24th Feb to 9th March and having Miami played 7th April to 20th April. So their would be a 4 week gap between the end of the Australian and start of Indian Wells, another 4 weeks between the end of indian Wells and start of Miami and a 5 week gap between the end of Miami and the start of the French Open. I would play Miami on green clay with a small South American season leading in to it.

Regarding Shanghai I would make this event the last tournament of the year (6th October to 19th October - 5 weeks after the end of the US Open) replacing the ATP tour finals. The only mandatory events would then be the 4 grand slams and the 3 ATP majors, and the players could pick and choose the other tournaments they wanted to play.

The 3 ATP majors would have a 10 year contract so if other events emerged (in South America, South Africa, Asia...) they could one day be replaced if they didn't keep their prize money and facilities up to a certain standard.

A lot of people would be against these changes with the argument that they currently compare players throughout history on how many majors they won. You don't need to be a tennis historian to know this argument is useless ( the whole period that players who turned pro couldn't play the grand slams, throughout the 70s lots of players skipped the French as it was seen as a lesser slam, and from the start of the open era to 1988 the Australian open wasn't a real major).
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Old 05-20-2014, 10:16 PM   #7
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Default Re: What is your wish for a revamped tennis season?

A grass masters, even if it requires bribing some Russian oligarch to build a massive tennis complex in the English countryside that is used once a year.
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Old 05-20-2014, 10:32 PM   #8
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Default Re: What is your wish for a revamped tennis season?

if you're going from scratch. Extra week of tournaments before the AO (3 weeks of tournaments rather than 2, perhaps move the other Asian events to the start of the year instead of the fall).

Then the golden swing comes after the indoor hard season rather than concurrent, then European clay, then RG, 1 empty week, 3 weeks of grass court tennis, Wimbledon, US Open swing, US Open (all fine as is), European indoors and some of the Asian events, WTF, end of season.
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Old 05-20-2014, 10:48 PM   #9
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Default Re: What is your wish for a revamped tennis season?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pangloss View Post
Basically: replace a couple of hard court masters with grass court ones. Preferably American ones, say Miami and Cincinnati.
Kick out the oldest M1000 still held in its original location? Kick a fall M1000 and the shitshow in Miami if you want, but not Cincy. Or Canada for that matter.
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Old 05-20-2014, 10:55 PM   #10
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Default Re: What is your wish for a revamped tennis season?

I agree that there are too many hard court 1000 tournaments, and I agree that the ATP tour should be designed to prepare the players for the Grand Slam tournaments. In that regard, Indian Wells and Miami should be played concurrently, should lose their 1000 status and should be made into one week events. That way they would take up one week instead of four. Use the three extra weeks to expand the South American swing. I'm against any non-Slam tournaments that last more than a week. It confuses casual fans.

Indian Wells and Miami have been getting preferential treatment for too long. It's even worse on the women side, where there are only four "premier mandatory" tournaments, two of which are Indian Wells and Miami.

Respect Davis Cup weeks. As is the case today, there should be no ATP events during Davis Cup weeks.
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Old 05-21-2014, 12:09 AM   #11
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Default Re: What is your wish for a revamped tennis season?

Drop Miami, begin the clay season two weeks earlier, add those two weeks to the grass season, and have the Miami-replacing Masters on grass.
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Old 05-21-2014, 12:13 AM   #12
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Default Re: What is your wish for a revamped tennis season?

More grass tournaments less hard, and please get rid of the AO, it is a useless GS.
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Old 05-21-2014, 03:30 AM   #13
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Default Re: What is your wish for a revamped tennis season?

More grass, less clay.
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