Caroline Wozniacki (Edwin Martinez, Wikimedia Commons)
Ok, I am a grumpy tennis fan, who needs to use the Any Sport Any Time forum to release.
If you haven’t heard, this will be the final season that the Men’s and Women’s tennis tournaments on the ATP and WTA tour will be played on separate weeks.
Starting in 2011, the Rogers Men’s Cup and Rogers Women’s Cup will be played at the exact same time!
Ok, I understand if the tennis tournaments were played at the same venue, as we see at Wimbledon, the French Open, the U.S. Open, Australian Open, Tennis Masters Series Indian Wells and Tennis Masters Series Miami, but in Canada they’re not.
The Rogers Cup events for men and women alternate each year between Montreal and Toronto. In 2010, the men were in Toronto last week and the women are in Montreal this week. Next year, the men will be in Montreal and the women in Toronto during the same week.
Who loses? I think the WTA will lose more than the ATP. I will be surprised if the Rogers Women’s Cup will be shown at the high level it is shown this week, when they will have to go head-to-head against the men. The bottom line is more people want to see Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray than Jelena Jankovic, Caroline Wozniacki, Elena Dementieva and Kim Clijsters. Sponsors know that. Viewers know that.
Which at the end of the day, it is too bad. We only live in one country, and will make things mighty challenging for tennis organizers in Canada to host two significant events– at the same time. Canadian fans who go from Montreal to Toronto or vice versa every summer now don’t have the chance to do so.
Another group that will lose are existing Canadian female tennis players. They will receive significant less media attention as they have to share the stage with the men. Female players at the grass roots level will also lose as they won’t be able to see their role models as often. This is not to say that the men and women won’t be seen on two separate channels– there is a likelihood that will happen. But women’s action will be recognized at a lower pedestal.
Women’s tennis fans across the country lose– and that’s the bottom line.