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So I've been thinking, one of the main reasons why juniors can't compete with adults is the physicality and the intensity of training involved in playing at the professional level. Most players struggle with needing to spend 3 hours a day just in the gym, after having dominated juniors maybe doing 3 hours a week there.

A player like Alex Zverev was the top junior in the world at 15 and is now starting to play with the Men, and he's not winning, but he'll be able to compete with them earlier than juniors who stay in Juniors until they're 18.

So I was thinking, what if the ITF changed it's policy, and made it so you're only considered a Junior if you're U16. That way if you get to the top of the Junior rankings at 14 or 15, you're almost forced to start training harder and competing in Futures in order to advance your career. I think part of the reason why Men's tennis is getting so old is that players are getting too comfortable in U18's, as soon as the young touring pro's hit a bump in the road they go back to Juniors (Karen Khachanov playing Junior French Open, Bernard Tomic did the same thing).
 

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Most of the guys who reach the apex of juniors at 16 years old transition to a schedule of mostly pro tournaments nowadays anyway. In any event I'm not sure how a guy like Khachanov who is playing a full pro schedule and struggling is going to slow his development by playing one junior tournament.
 

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I have no idea why this "generation" thing is bothering some people so much. Just let the game develop naturally as it always has.

Also, I don't think any juniors player purposefully do not train their bodies in their teen years. It's just that the game is becoming super-physical and you need to be close to your mid-20's to compete at the top nowadays.
 
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