Usually the practice of equal work predates the debate for equal pay. In tennis, the practice of equal pay pre-dated the debate for equal work.
In the 40 years since Billie-Jean King’s historic victory over Bobby Riggs in the “Battle of the Sexes,” which lit the fuse for the global expansion of women’s tennis, the game has become the biggest women’s sport on the planet, with the stars of the game known on a first name basis the world over.
Eventually, the financial rewards slowly followed suit, culminating in 2007 when Wimbledon become the last of the four grand slam events to award equal prize money to both the men and women.
While this would seem like a non-controversial sign of gender equality and progress, opposition to equal prize money at the grand slams is not isolated to the misogynistic fringe of the tennis community. Their argument is simple; men play best-of-five sets whereas the women just best-of-three. FULL POST
There’s an argument that this generation of men's tennis is boring and I think it’s a valid one.
It’s not boring to see two great players like Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic compete in a final.
What is getting mundane is watching the same tactic in every single match of every single grand slam for the last five or six years.
Nowadays they all settle down and say "OK, this is going to be two hours of baseline rallies." The guy who outlasts the other one wins. It’s taken a lot of the skill out of tennis. FULL POST
By claiming her 17th grand slam singles title at the U.S. Open, Serena Williams now sits just one major title behind legends of the game Martina Navratilova and Chris Evert, and five behind Steffi Graf, who holds the Open Era record of 22.
It now seems inevitable that she will at least tie and perhaps even surpass the numbers set by Navratilova and Evert, solidifying her place in the debate over who is the greatest of all time, but just how many more can she win? FULL POST
After his worst summer in a decade, Roger Federer now stands at the unfamiliar intersection between one of the greatest careers in tennis history, if not sporting history, and a precarious future as a potential also-ran in the upper echelons of the game.
After his historic record-setting run of 33 straight quarterfinal-or-better appearances at grand slams came to an abrupt end at this year’s Wimbledon, the former world No. 1 was expected to cut back his schedule, spend more time with his family and ease into the final phase of his career with one eye on his impending retirement.
However, the Swiss star decided to double down and push forward, dismissing any and all questions about stepping away from tennis. By doing so, the 17-time grand slam champion risks diminishing his historic legacy - a prospect further raised by his fourth-round defeat against Tommy Robredo at the U.S. Open. FULL POST