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Talking Points 2006
 
Please click on a topic below . . . .
 
Ghost of Christmas Present visits British LTA
The British LTA will tuck into the Quality Street a little ruefully this Christmas, reflecting on its preposterously extravagant spending on the likes of Brad Gilbert, Paul Annacone, Peter Lundgren, Carl Maes et al. Surely all the money at their disposal would be better spent addressing the base of the pyramid and selective funding of player development at international tennis academies? Click here
21 December 2006
 
Appearance money devalues sport
No one would begrudge the world's best players the right to earn what their market value dictates, but there is an increasing perception that under-the-table appearance fees or guarantees are beginning to warp the integrity of sporting commitment. Click here
7 December 2006
 
Greatness beckons for Federer
The world number one does not take his successes for granted. His public blubberings bear witness to that. But it must be difficult for him to keep his feet on the ground when he can see the heavens so close. Click here
22 November 2006
 
Save tennis from Frankenstein!
Today, when scientists are applying for permission to create part-human, part-animal embryos, it seems pertinent to consider how scientific and technological innovations have blurred the lines between reality and fantasy, between authenticity and artificiality, even in the world of tennis. Click here
8 November 2006
 
Round-robin rashness
The Next Generation Adelaide International, starting on the first day of 2007, will be the first ATP event to use the new experimental round-robin format. ATP chairman Etienne de Villiers appears to have sold the idea to tournament directors, members of the ATP Player Council and a whole host of concurring players and pundits who may well have paid scant attention to the detail. Click here
27 October 2006
 
Tennis and the deprivation model
The 2006 season-ending WTA Championships will take place next month without a single American representative for the first time in the history of the event. Are Americans just not hungry enough? Click here
18 October 2006
 
On-court coaching is bananas
The Sony Ericsson WTA Tour has experimented with on-court coaching at tournaments in Montreal, New Haven and Stuttgart so far this season and wider experimentation is anticipated in 2007. It undermines the very principle of singles competition. Click here
6 October 2006
 
USTA crowns King and embarrasses Wimbledon
On the opening night of the 2006 US Open, the USTA ceremoniously renamed the National Tennis Center as the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in honour of the tennis pioneer who has been relentless in her pursuit of equal rights in the sport. Meanwhile, Wimbledon continues to drag its heels on the issue of equal pay. Click here
29 September 2006
 
Hewitt clutches security blanket in Buenos Aires
Lleyton Hewitt's arrival at Buenos Aires for the Davis Cup semi-final between Australia and Argentina was heralded by a blaring siren and the flashing blue-and-white light of a police car whisking the former world number one to his hotel. Are the Argentinian players justified in ridiculing his security concerns? Click here
20 September 2006
 
Champion or nearly-man? Andy Roddick: in his own words
Andy Roddick's self-deprecating quotable quips may well be a form of self-healing, deflecting the pain and disappointment of losing for at least the duration of a press conference, but sometimes you wonder if they reflect real insecurities and self-doubt. Click here
12 September 2006
 
Agassi falls and rises in the valley of ashes
Following defeat at the hands of Benjamin Becker at this year's US Open, a bald, pigeon-toed American bowed and blew kisses to an adoring crowd for the very last time at the end of a glittering career. What is his legacy? Click here
3 September 2006
 
Murray in a pickle
In just three weeks Brad Gilbert has steered Andy Murray to the final in Washington, a semi-final appearance in the Toronto Masters and a place in the world's top twenty. What makes him such a special coach? Click here
18 August 2006
 
Where sport has no place
Sport has often been used to foster dialogue between warring peoples, but that's certainly not the case in Iraq, where sportsmen and sportswomen have become specific terrorist targets. Click here
4 August 2006
 
Victory will not be denied us!
Since the 90s, there has been a decline in competitive sport in Britain's schools. How can that trend be justified? Click here
21 July 2006
 
Wimbledon 2006 - sartorial reflections
Was Roger Federer's Wimbledon jacket a sartorial faux-pas? Click here
18 July 2006
 
Should we accept sporting migrants?
Would we accept Novak Djokovic as one of us if he were to apply for British citizenship? Click here
19 June 2006
 
Federer, Nadal and the Flying Spaghetti Monster
This month I preview the French Open hanging upside down in my gravity boots! Click here
19 May 2006
 
Three stripes and you're out!
Next month's high court battle between Adidas and the All England Club at Wimbledon could cost the sport thousands of pounds. Why did the clothing company decide to bite the hand that feeds it? Click here
28 April 2006
 
Half-cocked Hawk-Eye
If instant replay technology is to help achieve the goal of greater fairness and accuracy, limited challenges must go and Hawk-Eye must be put in the hands of the umpires. Click here
19 April 2006
 
Is Borg crazy to sell his Wimbledon trophies?
Andre Agassi and Jimmy Connors are calling on the All England Club to buy Bjorn Borg's Wimbledon memorabilia to save it from falling into the hands of a private collector. Click here
14 March 2006
 
How strict should strict liability be?
If Karol Beck proves spiked drinks were the source of his positive drug test, should the principle of strict liability be reviewed? Click here
15 February 2006
 
Quitting is just a shortcut to losing
Henin-Hardenne's retirement should not take the gloss off Amelie Mauresmo's Australian Open triumph. Click here
2 February 2006
 
Etiquette? Are you sure?
Cheating is becoming endemic in junior tennis up and down the country. Click here
20 January 2006
 
Hawk-Eye: Panacea or Pandora?
When the novelty wears off, Hawk-Eye ball-tracking technology will be judged by how intrusive it is. Click here
1 January 2006
 

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