Shocking: Amelie Mauresmo implies that women’s tennis lacks appeal

6
Black Friday

The WTA has been fighting for equality for decades and even today women’s tennis players are often faced with beliefs that men’s game is superior and more entertaining. Female athletes work hard to prove themselves in the men’s world and earn equal treatment, so it comes as a huge surprise that former WTA number one Amelie Mauresmo, currently the French Open tournament director, is stating that men’s tennis has more star power and therefore deserves better scheduling.

Amelie Mauresmo

When asked why nine out of the ten night sessions at this year’s Roland Garros involved men’s matches, the two-time Grand Slam champion Mauresmo replied that right now men’s tennis has more appeal. In her first year as the French Open director, Mauresmo explained that she wanted to balance the schedule, but struggled to find enough attractive women’s match-ups for night sessions.

The only ladies’ encounter that got the prime-time treatment was home star Alize Cornet vs. former Roland Garros champion Jelena Ostapenko in the second round. Ticket sales and viewership were most probably the priorities that Mauresmo had in mind when composing the schedule and her conclusion was obviously that men’s clashes bring more benefit to the event.

The French Open’s first female tournament director admitted that the decision-making process was tough. What made the situation even more difficult was the fact that night sessions in Paris feature just one match, so it was more difficult for it to be a women’s match.

Not surprisingly, Mauresmo’s statements haven’t received a warm welcome in the WTA world. After advancing to the semifinals in Paris, world No.1 Iga Swiatek said that Mauresmo’s stance was “a little bit disappointing and surprising.”

It’s kind of the personal opinion of every person if they like men’s tennis or women’s tennis more or if they like them equally, but I think women’s tennis has a lot of advantages. And some may say that it’s unpredictable and girls are not consistent. But on the other hand, it may also be something that is really appealing and it may really attract more people.

(source: ESPN)

6 COMMENTS

  1. Mauresmo should, at least, get fired as tournament director!!! Unfortunately that will never happen because no one will have the guts to do it…Sad!

  2. It’s a difficult situation because it is very hard to measure as no two match ups are the same. The appeal of a match boils down to three things. The talent involved, the degree and intensity of the competition, and the extent to which you are invested in the player. So you get good ratings if it’s a player from your own country because people are more invested in that player. And for example the match between Djokovic and Nadal, who are both very talented and can be predicted to have intense competition, plus the French seem pretty invested in Nadal for sentimental reasons, is going to have more appeal than a match between, say, Kasatkina and Kudermetova which I watched last night.

    So with all these factors it’s very hard to say that any given men’s match will be more interesting than any given men’s match. But there is also a chicken and egg thing where if you promote the men’s matches more then of course that will generate more interest in them. I think the tournaments should make an effort to promote women’s sport more, but not if it is damaging their revenue too much. They should also make sure they are measuring the outcomes of different types of scheduling properly and not just base it on supposition.

    Myself, I often prefer watching women’s tennis because it can be more about craft and less about a giant serve and not much else. On the other hand the match between Djokovic and Nadal was much more gripping than K vs K, and watching Nick Kyrgios serve is pure joy.

  3. It’s better to face some realities if they are ever going to change and improve them..
    Women’s tennis lacks passion and enthusiasm and star power…
    Let’s all help as we can

  4. I somewhat agree with Mauresmo. I stopped following women’s tennis, because their matches are no longer interesting, and they don’t have compelling rivalries like Nadal-Djokovic-Federer trivalries.

    Winning GS is like winning lotteries for WTA player, anybody could emerge as champion today, and succumbs to unknown player in the next week. Iga Swiatek is an exception of course, but she doesn’t have worthy rival to make it interesting.

    WTA is cluttered with too many ball-basher who can’t keep the balls IN the court (Sabalenka, Sakkari, Brady, etc). I remember 2021 Aussie Final was soo bad for too many unforced errors and all I could hear is “Out”, “Out”, “Out”, from the line judges.

    Some players are indeed have interesting tactical games: Andreescu, Fernandez, Bencic, but they lack of power and injury prone.

    Some are good enough technically, but also a big drama queen: Naomi Osaka (oh come on, you’re paid hundreads of millions dollars, so stop act like a teenager in her menstrual period, act like true professional. Nobody needs to hear your”cries” or your “inner suffering”. Everybody suffers something in their jobs, but nobody cries like spoiled baby like you If you don’t want to work, just resign, don’t sell drama!)

    Some are just ungrateful of what they have: Ash Barty, who can just leave the competition because of “lack motivation”.

    So WTA: don’t blame people who couldn’t take the “drama” anymore. Be professional and be interesting! We don’t pay expensive tickets and TV subscriptions for watching “amateurish drama queen”. We want real world-class competitions: Serena-Venus-Hingis-Henin-Clijsters-Sharapova-Davenport kind of competitions.

    Don’t talk about equal paid or equal TV prime time if you guys can’t give us equal quality show like ATP players. Just don’t ask for too much if you guys can’t give as much.

    Remember the KEY words: BE PROFESSIONAL!

  5. I somewhat agree with Mauresmo. I stopped following women’s tennis, because their matches are no longer interesting, and they don’t have compelling rivalries like Nadal-Djokovic-Federer trivalries.

    Winning GS is like winning lotteries for WTA player, anybody could emerge as champion today, and succumbs to unknown player in the next week. Iga Swiatek is an exception of course, but she doesn’t have worthy rival to make it interesting.

    WTA is cluttered with too many ball-basher who can’t keep the balls IN the court (Sabalenka, Sakkari, Brady, etc). I remember 2021 Aussie Final was soo bad for too many unforced errors and all I could hear is “Out”, “Out”, “Out”, from the line judges.

    Some players are indeed have interesting tactical games: Andreescu, Fernandez, Bencic, but they lack of power and injury prone.

    Some are good enough technically, but also a big drama queen: Naomi Osaka (oh come on, you’re paid hundreads of millions dollars, so stop act like a teenager in her menstrual period, act like true professional. Nobody needs to hear your”cries” or your “inner suffering”. Everybody suffers something in their jobs, but nobody cries like spoiled baby like you If you don’t want to work, just resign, don’t sell drama!)

    Some are just ungrateful of what they have: Ash Barty, who can just leave the competition because of “lack motivation”.

    So WTA: don’t blame people who couldn’t take the “drama” anymore. Be professional and be interesting! We don’t pay expensive tickets and TV subscriptions for watching “amateurish drama queen”. We want real world-class competitions: Serena-Venus-Hingis-Henin-Clijsters-Sharapova-Davenport kind of competitions.

    Don’t talk about equal paid or equal TV prime time if you guys can’t give us equal quality show like ATP players. Just don’t ask for too much if you guys can’t give as much.

  6. As a person who had weekend tickets to both Forest Hills & later the US Open at the National Tennis Center from 1959 to 2006!, I have a suggestion: DO WHAT THE US OPEN HAS DONE FOR YEARS: Schedule two night matches, one men’s & one women’s. Having only one match is not good value for tennis fans, especially if the one match is a woman’s match which can last at most 3 sets & at least only 2. Surely this is something that can be changed.

    Virginia

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