The Brisbane International Mens singles final was one of those matches that cries out for a change in the rules. The final in my opinion was as boring as bat shit. Why ? Because of the current day rules that require a 'tweak' to gain a little more interest in the sport just as the Twenty/20 Big Bash cricket has in this country over the past month or so. Now there is a sport on the rise.
Tennis has come up with some interesting changes in formats over the past few years yet the hierarchy of the sport are forgetting the most important change that was tested many years ago in the 'Battle of the sexes' match between Connors and Navratilova. They gave Jimmy one serve, yes just ONE SERVE and it made for a brilliant tennis match because it did not reward mediocrity as the current tennis format does.
Yes tennis rewards mediocrity because it tells you that even if you miss it's ok, you can have another try. Golf ? You go bush with a drive you get penalised. Squash ? Haven't played for a while but from memory if you miss a serve, too bad, you lose that point. Table Tennis ? What happens if you miss a serve ? I don't believe you get another shot at it, correct me if I am wrong.
AFL Football, sorry I kicked it crooked, give me the ball back, let me have another go. Cricket, bugger it I got bowled first ball, give me another chance. Silly stuff hey ?
So why is tennis an exemption ? With a sport that accepts nothing but technical brilliance it lacks in common sense. Guys like Raonic, Karlovic and Anderson are living proof that you do not have to own anything but a big first serve because the law of averages tells them that they will win the majority of their service games and then they can tee off on their returns. They beat 'real' tennis players because of it.
What I would love to see just ONCE is a tennis tournament that defies the current rules that accept a 'mistake' as a 'blip' on the technical radar and allow another entry into a point. It's all very well to do things like offer a short deuce to speed up doubles matches yet it forgets singles also needs a tweak for the better.
Imagine if the Brisbane international of 2017 offered a new format to the tennis World that included not only short deuces but a one serve rule that actually made guys like Milos Raonic hit a few more balls to claim a win rather than just a big 'free swing' ? Fair dinkum I reckon there is a format that may just bring some big crowds through the gates just for the uniqueness of it.
Fast 4 Tennis doesn't cut it as it's nothing that really changes the game of tennis, in fact it's almost confusing. Do the Big Bash thing, change it up, offer something different, give the big servers a test against the 'real' players of World tennis, the ones who can actually hit a ball over the net more than 3 times to win a point.
I reckon I am on to something here. Do I put patent on this ??
I believe that may be a great idea GT......