Andy Murray vs Robin Haase, Thursday, Time - 1:00pm BST - Discuss the match
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Yes the consensus seemed to be that they need a visionary rather than a pen-pusher as Harman put it I think.   Not sure that David Lloyd fits the bill though?
It was interesting that they'd had the same discussion on radio according to Harman  that Fabrice and Nick Mullins had had on tv ie would they trade one Andy Murray for all those French players in top 100.  Nick M said emphatically no, whereas Harman said yes. 
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To my mind the new head of British tennis needs to be someone with a backbone. It needs to be someone who gets the game, but also understands it as a business in a way. It needs to be someone who will say it like it is, will stick their own head on the block, if you like, to get things done.

I think we do need to look at other countries, to see how they do things. More than that though, we need someone in charge who sees the game as something for everyone, including kids, rather than being purely for the Pimm's brigade for two or three weeks a year. It needs to be someone who is prepared to shake things up a bit, in order to change the way the game is perceived.
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Yes the consensus seemed to be that they need a visionary rather than a pen-pusher as Harman put it I think.   Not sure that David Lloyd fits the bill though?
It was interesting that they'd had the same discussion on radio according to Harman  that Fabrice and Nick Mullins had had on tv ie would they trade one Andy Murray for all those French players in top 100.  Nick M said emphatically no, whereas Harman said yes. 

It strikes me as odd that anyone would suggest giving up one player at the top for any amount lower down the rankings. I can understand that depth is needed, of course, but shouldn't the approach be to develop those lower down, including focusing on getting kids into the game, whilst using the one at the top as a model to aspire to?
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To my mind the new head of British tennis needs to be someone with a backbone. It needs to be someone who gets the game, but also understands it as a business in a way. It needs to be someone who will say it like it is, will stick their own head on the block, if you like, to get things done.


That was pretty much what they thought. (They being Inverdale, Harman, Mark Petchey and Sam Smith).
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... but shouldn't the approach be to develop those lower down, including focusing on getting kids into the game, whilst using the one at the top as a model to aspire to?
Which is exactly what Judy Murray is doing in Scotland re kids, and adults too, with some considerable success.  Anyone who can get kids in one of Glasgow's more deprived areas interested in tennis, and get local clubs to take the promising ones on for free, has to be pretty special.
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It strikes me as odd that anyone would suggest giving up one player at the top for any amount lower down the rankings. I can understand that depth is needed, of course, but shouldn't the approach be to develop those lower down, including focusing on getting kids into the game, whilst using the one at the top as a model to aspire to?

I think it was Petchey on TV who said that the choice was a false one. He said that Andy Murray, with his considerable talents and attitude, was always going to break through whether from inside or outside the system. But a good system would also produce a higher standard of player. So, in other words, you can have your cake and eat it !
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Yes the consensus seemed to be that they need a visionary rather than a pen-pusher as Harman put it I think.   Not sure that David Lloyd fits the bill though?
It was interesting that they'd had the same discussion on radio according to Harman  that Fabrice and Nick Mullins had had on tv ie would they trade one Andy Murray for all those French players in top 100.  Nick M said emphatically no, whereas Harman said yes. 
Would you trade one of the best players in the world who consistently mixes it with some of the best players of all time, winning and competing for Slams for a dozen decent-to-good but inconsistent players who see making the semi-finals of a Masters as a huge achievement?

Does it even bear thinking about? The old adage 'quality over quantity' rings true here. I'd rather watch one top quality player contest with the best than several players who show flashes of quality but often lose to guys ranked below them and rarely go deep in the big tournaments. Don't even need to think about it.
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Would you trade one of the best players in the world who consistently mixes it with some of the best players of all time, winning and competing for Slams for a dozen decent-to-good but inconsistent players who see making the semi-finals of a Masters as a huge achievement?

Does it even bear thinking about? The old adage 'quality over quantity' rings true here. I'd rather watch one top quality player contest with the best than several players who show flashes of quality but often lose to guys ranked below them and rarely go deep in the big tournaments. Don't even need to think about it.

Agreed ! I've always thought how frustrating it must be to be a French tennis fan. A lot of good first weeks at slams, and then.......

We're so lucky to have Andy to support, although a couple of top 50 players to back him up would be nice.
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Would you trade one of the best players in the world who consistently mixes it with some of the best players of all time, winning and competing for Slams for a dozen decent-to-good but inconsistent players who see making the semi-finals of a Masters as a huge achievement?

Does it even bear thinking about? The old adage 'quality over quantity' rings true here. I'd rather watch one top quality player contest with the best than several players who show flashes of quality but often lose to guys ranked below them and rarely go deep in the big tournaments. Don't even need to think about it.

Exactly.

The thing that strikes me though, is that at RG we are getting a glimpse of our past, and also at what may be our future, when Andy is gone from the game. I'm sure we all remember a time when British involvement in the slams was over in a few days. When Andy is gone we could so easily slip back to that. It's a bit frightening really.

What I think we need is to look at how Andy has made it, to see how, if at all, his story could be learned from. I also think we need to adopt a tougher approach. We should reward improving players, those who want to be better, and stop giving wildcards out like sweets to those who are not developing as they should. To my mind we should focus on Andy to show what can be done, but also look to the future too, rather than waiting for Andy to go and then being back in the tennis wilderness for years.
[ Last edit by teejay1 June 02, 2013, 12:10 AM ] IP Logged
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The thing that strikes me though, is that at RG we are getting a glimpse of our past, and also at what may be our future, when Andy is gone from the game. I'm sure we all remember a time when British involvement in the slams was over in a few days. When Andy is gone we could so easily slip back to that. It's a bit frightening really.


  Good post. if that doesn't help to concentrate minds, don't know what will.
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yes - let's hope the candidates for the LTA job will be asked how they will deal with this.  I agree it's a false choice but you can see how  it made a nice conversation filler for the comms!
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http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/tennis/22746462
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^ Excellent article.  Thanks Angie. Smile  Shame though that Jonathan is apparently leaving the BBC because I really like him.
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Jonathan Overend ‏@5livetennis
Miles Maclagan to coach Laura Robson.  Details and interview coming up on BBC Radio 5 Live.
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Jonathan Overend ‏@5livetennis
Miles Maclagan to coach Laura Robson.  Details and interview coming up on BBC Radio 5 Live.

Robbo turns pusher *facepalm*
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