LE GRAND BLEU - BLUE CLAY
Nov 13, 2011, 11:46:56 AM | by
For most people blue is their favourite colour. I asked Roger Federer the other day in Paris what his favourite colour was and he said: ‘I don’t know ... blue maybe?” So if blue is a favourite for ...
For most people blue is their favourite colour. I asked Roger Federer the other day in Paris what his favourite colour was and he said: ‘I don’t know ... blue maybe?” So if blue is a favourite for most people why is there a fuss brewing about the fact that the Masters 1000 tournament in Madrid, just before the French Open, will have blue clay courts next May? Reading between the lines Federer is not too impressed. He said: “It’s been an on-going debate, hasn’t it? It’s something that’s been discussed a lot in the player council and at the board level and all that stuff. “So one thing I know is I know someone who is not happy about it and is very much against it. So, yeah, it’s a difficult subject to talk about, to be honest.” That other person is Rafael Nadal who has absolutely slammed the thought of the blue clay courts, thinking it is a ridiculous idea. C’mon guys, what’s the harm? Why not blue courts? There are blue hard courts, and green hard courts, some even have a purple tinge and they show up with a different hue on TV? When Billie-Jean King introduced World team Tennis, the courts were multi-coloured, in fact there were no lines. The blue clay courts will be a novelty for the fans. Would you guys reading this go to a tournament and see the blue clay courts or are you really going to watch the best tennis? Isn’t a court just a court whether it’s blue or terracotta coloured? What do you think? Should the balls be in white again then rather than yellow? They would probably stand out even more. The word “novelty” is what has hit the nail on the head. Tennis at this level is not a novelty. It is serious stuff and while it is fine to introduce certain gimmicks, it’s just plain silly to be messing around with the fundamentals. Players rely on four fundamentals: racquets, shoes, balls and the court surface. It doesn’t matter what clothes they wear, doesn’t matter about the advertising or how they are introduced on court, have a laser show or whatever or have models on the change of ends giving players their drink, none of those aspects will necessarily interfere with how a player plays the game, but when it comes to those four things it is crucial they are right. I just wonder why people feel tennis cannot (or does not) stand up in its own right and that gimmick such as a blue clay court has to be introduced to garner attention. This is a great game that has stood the test of time and where clay courts have had a terracotta colour and grass courts have been green This is not a children’s game to be fooling around with and while Ion Tiriac, the former Romanian player and now tennis power man (I think he owns half of the country) from Transylvania who owns the Madrid event has always been innovative and flamboyant with his promotion and publicity and has done an incredible job over the years, this time it’s just a bit much. But then thinking about it, maybe Tiriac is not so stupid, he has certainly got the tongues wagging and maybe that’s what it was all about. The event in Madrid has got its advance publicity, game and set … The ball is in your court, blue, green, red or white, to tell us what you think.