How to Assess Your Tennis Court Lighting System
New tennis court lighting technology is greatly improving the player experience and helping facilities save money on operating costs. Understanding how your lighting system is performing and determining whether your facility would benefit from renovation is not a difficult process. Watch the attached video to learn more, and if you have questions about lights don't hesitate to contact us at email@example.com.
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The Serb and the Scot
Nadal and Federer, Federer and Nadal. Two of the greatest, maybe the greatest two players of all time. To find a duopoly so dominant in the history of Open Era tennis, one has to look over to the women’s game – to Venus and Serena in the 2000s, to Steffi and Monica in the 1990s, to Chris and Martina in the 1970s and 1980s. In the men’s game, when it comes to the majors, everyone expects Rafa or Roger to win, and with good reason. Between them, they have owned the number one spot for over 360 consecutive weeks and by the start of this season they had swept up 21 of the last 23 grand slam tournaments (over 91%). Their dominance seemed unassailable.
The Serb and the Scot, just how good are they?
At this year’s Australian Open, however, things played out somewhat differently. Making the final instead were Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic, players who have been knocking at the door of Nadal and Federer since 2007-8. It would be premature perhaps to say this represents the dawn of a new order, but it does raise an interesting question. Just how good are the Serb and the Scot?
The short answer is: extremely good. While Murray and Djokovic have been clearly trailing the Spaniard and the Swiss these last few years, they have nonetheless already amassed a set of achievements that mark them out as being even more special than their 2 major titles and 7 finals appearances might suggest.
Like Chris and Martina before them and Venus and Serena after, Monica and Steffi dominated the women's game
in the 1990s.
Consider this: having just won his second Australian Open title, Novak Djokovic now ranks at 20th in the list of Open Era men’s champions, in terms of majors won. This may not sound that high, but he is only 23, and has faced consistently vigorous opposition at the business end of the tournaments. What is more, Djokovic has already demonstrated a very impressive ability to get himself into real contention at the later stages of these toughest of competitions.
Of the last 16 majors Djokovic entered, he has reached no fewer than 14 quarter-finals. In the Open Era, only four men have ever reached the quarters more than 14 times out of any consecutive 16 major tournaments entered: Connors and Federer (each at 16 of 16), and Lendl and Borg (each at 15). Djokovic ties Nadal and McEnroe at 14 but is ahead of great players such as Agassi (13), Sampras, Newcombe, Rosewall, Wilander and Courier (12 each). His overall match winning percentage, at just under 76% and rising, puts him 12th, just behind Andre Agassi but ahead of greats like Stefan Edberg and Mats Wilander, who have 13 slams between them. If this level of consistency continues, it should be only a matter of time before Djokovic’s haul of majors increases yet again.
In terms of Quater-finals reached streaks, Djokovic is already ahead of tennis legends Agassi and Sampras. Unfortunately, history only remembers the winners.
Andy Murray might appear to have less cause for optimism, but a quick look at his results shows this to be far from the case. Since 1990, the ATP tour has been organized into the following hierarchy of events: the four grand slams, followed by the end-of-year Masters event, followed by the nine ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournaments, followed by the rest. In the Masters 1000 events, which along with the slams are distinguished by the fact that the great majority of the world’s very best players enter the draws, Murray is currently 7th since 1990, with 6 titles acquired over 3 years. To put this into perspective, Pete Sampras won 11 in his entire career; Yevgeny Kafelnikov won none. Other than Murray, only Marcello Rios, with 5, and Andrei Medvedev, with 4, have won more than 3 of these events and yet did not win a major. If Murray is good enough to beat all comers regularly at this level, it follows that he should also be good enough to claim a slam.
Of course, ‘should’ is not the same as ‘will’, and Murray has now fallen three times at the final stage. A quick review of the history books, however, reveals that he is not unique in this situation. Goran Ivanisevic lost his first 3 finals, before claiming his only major trophy at Wimbledon 2001; Andre Agassi lost twice at the French and once at the U.S., and then went on to win 8; Ivan Lendl lost his first 4, before also going on to win 8. In fact, there has yet to be a player in the Open Era who has reached 3 finals and then failed to win a grand slam title. In many respects, Murray has been unlucky that his opponents in major finals have played so well on the day, but if he keeps on doing what he’s been doing, the outlook is good. It may seem grim consolation, but history is on his side.
Ivan Lendl lost his first four slam finals, before going on to win eight.
In a number of respects, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray are already two of the most successful players of the last 20 years. Where they remain behind the very best, though, is where it matters most. History doesn’t tend to remember winning percentages and quarter-final performances. The legends of the great players are written on grand slam silver. In this realm, Federer and Nadal have been near to supreme, between them inflicting 5 defeats on Murray and no fewer than 9 on Djokovic at the slams.
To make the mark on tennis history they want to and surely believe they can, Djokovic and Murray will both need to continue doing what they have been doing – improving their games, physically and mentally, and giving themselves through consistent play the opportunities to challenge Nadal and Federer for the top trophies. At the first slam of the year, Murray and Djokovic did just that, reaching the final and winning the title respectively. This may not mean that these two players will break the stranglehold Federer and Nadal have had over grand slam tennis, but if anyone should have a chance, it will surely be the Serb and the Scot.
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Watch Federer or Murray glide around the court – they are rarely out of position and they make it look so effortless. But the reality is, they worked relentlessly on their foot work and you should too. At the club level, more shots are missed because players fail to get the ball into their optimal hitting zone then for any failure of technique. If you want to be a better tennis player, it all starts with better lateral movement. Pat Dougherty
Lessons You Can Learn From the Australian Open
Kim Clijsters and Li Na dazzled tennis fans during their highly competitive and entertaining Australian Open final, but what happened to world number one, Caroline Wozniacki? She's as well as anyone and plays great defense. True, but as former great, Martina Navratilova put it, “Defense doesn’t win matches; offense wins matches, especially Grand Slams." There were a lot of other lessons to learn at the open if you watched closely and Paul Fein has some definite ideas.
ProStrokes 2.0 – Richard Gasquet's Backhand
This flashy tour veteran is still looking for a breakthrough year – elegant one handed backhand, plays from all parts of the court, including the net – but perhaps his window is beginning to close. He plays a classic version of the modern game, especially on the backhand wing. And he numbers among a crop of extremely good Frenchmen, but lately Monfils, LLodra, and Tsonga have been more to the center of the stage. New this issue, Gasquet's elegant one-handed backhand.
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