Friday, November 23, 2012

Eddie Herr Preview; List of 18s Main Draw Wild Cards, with Qualifying Beginning Saturday; USA Today Followup on USTA Junior Competition Changes

My preview of the Eddie Herr 16s and 18s divisions is available now at the Tennis Recruiting Network. My preview of the 12s and 14s will go up on Sunday.

I arrived at the IMG Bollettieri Academy this afternoon and was amazed by all the changes since last year. The indoor tennis facility is no longer serving as tournament headquarters, with many new tents everywhere--for registration, match calling, officials, players lounge, vendors, you name it. There is also a new Prince building just a few steps from court 8, where the stringers and the score reporting are located. I believe that scores are going up on the internet as soon as they are recorded, so please check the TennisLink site often if you are looking for a particular result.

The place to go for the order of play for the start of the 18s qualifying on Saturday is eddieherr.com, which also has links to the qualifying draws.

The wild cards for the 18s main draw, which begins Monday:

JC Aragone
Deiton Baughman
Djorde Djokovic
Osni Junior
Toshiki Matsuya
Tommy Mylnikov
Ronnie Schneider
Henrik Wiersholm

Naiktha Bains
Louisa Chirico
Jessica Ho
Dasha Ivanova
Kaitlyn McCarthy
Daria Sharapova
Maria Shishkina
Naomi Totka

I also heard that John Isner and Xavier Malisse will be participating in an exhibition for players, coaches and parents here on Tuesday.  There should be extra buzz on the always humming academy grounds on that day.

Chris Oddo, writing for USA Today, provided a followup story on the USTA Junior Competition changes today, with new perspectives from Dick Gould and John Whitlinger of Stanford, Lisa Stone of Parenting Aces, former ATP stars and current academy owners Johan Kriek and Harold Solomon, and Jon Vegosen and Kurt Kamperman of the USTA. The second Town Hall listening meeting is tomorrow (Saturday) at the National Open in Connecticut.


Cardinal pride said...

Well maybe we should listen to Coach Gould. Pretty funny Lisa Stone hasn't spoken to any Coach or parent who likes the changes...? Maybe she should have reached out to Coach Gould and Coach Solomon. Sounds like her concern is self serving.

Tmom said...

I am so confused. Where on earth do you see any sport advocating to diminish opportunities to it's players, in the name of increased multicultural participation.

The manufacturers obviously don't care about a dying US market. Otherwise we would be hearing from them.

Just plain ridiculous.

Jose said...

I was looking at the previous two comments. In regards to Lisa Stone who obviously is a very committed individual she makes no pretense that she does not support any of the proposed changes which is quite extreme. Her web site however in the comments overwhelmingly seems to express a more moderate set of opinions. Perhaps Lisa should look more carefully at her own web site. In regards to the second comment from TMOM one could easily make an argument that the more you create opportunities at the national level the less you create them at the sectional level which is where the growth of tennis is felt by many to occur. Multicultural participation(not a perjorative as implied from TMOM) must begin locally where resources are more abundant. As a final statement for those of you who take the Lisa Stone philosophy to remove all items from the new rules, this plan of action will probably get you nothing as a total revoke of the Jon Vegosen Presidency simply will not happen. Become practical.

Unknown said...

Jose assumes, wrongfully so, that opportunities are available at the sectional level. For some competitve players the opportunities at the sectional level are limited. Few tournaments and at those tournaments,the same four or five players dominate. Tournaments become like playing your siblings - you know their game they know yours so there is no chance to grow your game. Super regional play with the ability to go to the locations that are the most convenient, whether in your section or not, makes the most sense.

Charles said...

Unknown ( Are not we all) raises probably the best point of controversy. The players who are at the top of the section certainly can leave the section. The controversy is what happens to the players who are not at the top of the section? Should they get to leave the section?

TI said...

Why doesn't anyone want to talk about the Lisa Stone issue or the USA Today article. We have some of the best coaches in the US agreeing with the USTA. Lisa Stone is on her website trying to say this is the USTA PR department trying to deflect attention. Tennis insiders is showing a poll that has over 50% of the people saying we need to keep the new changes. This feels like to me a few people upset at the changes and trying to make it look like there are aot of people who are on their side. Steve Belamy and his "industry guys" look like a bunch of rich tennis parents who dont have their act together.

Truth said...

Tmom...what do you want to hear from the manufacturers? Anything specific?

been-there said...

I am a little suspicious of these comments, which are mostly promoting the changes? I was at a supernational (where they had a meeting w/ Mr.McEnroe, etc.) and also did not hear any parent in favor of the changes, similar to what Lisa Goodman is reporting.

Personally I don't have a side. If my kid isn't good enough, they won't be at the top anyway. But most of those parents were against the changes at the meeting I was at. In fact, I didn't hear one that was for the changes.

Either way people, your kid just needs to be good enough. Stop playing the points games and worrying about losing/gaining points. Put them in the 'yucky' tournament where the courts are bad, it is cold, and it is notoriously windy. You'll get them way further ahead in the long run.

Tmom said...

If I were a manufacturer, I would more opportunities for my customer base to use our products, not less.

I too am suspicious of all these commentate supporting the changes. Here in the trenches, court side, I have yet to hear anything positive. I picture one or two guys hammering away on their computer, like The Great Oz behind the curtain