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Post Info TOPIC: US College Signings 2017 (and general college tennis chat)


Tennis legend

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US College Signings 2017 (and general college tennis chat)


An ITF initiative to help support certain college players (not necessarily US) making the transition:

www.itftennis.com/news/267252.aspx



-- Edited by Coup Droit on Tuesday 1st of August 2017 08:05:36 AM

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Challenger qualifying

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Added Louis N to the list on P1



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Intermediate Club Player

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Yes, that was a great insight on Jasgar and the LTA from The Optimist. May it have served as a lesson to them.

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This may already have been mentioned elsewhere - and may not be reliable (though the source is generally very reliable) but the US tweeter @Parsa_Nemati is reporting that both Ms Burrage and Ms Appleton have decided to play professionally rather than attending university.

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Goodness, Spec, that IS news.....

(and an error, in my view, on the part of Emily Appleton in particular).

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Junior player

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Coup Droit wrote:

Goodness, Spec, that IS news.....

(and an error, in my view, on the part of Emily Appleton in particular).


 Indeed, an error by both, what's the rush? 



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Kenneth wrote:
Coup Droit wrote:

Goodness, Spec, that IS news.....

(and an error, in my view, on the part of Emily Appleton in particular).


 Indeed, an error by both, what's the rush? 


 I do so hope that the LTA hasn't 'bribed' them with sudden promises of extra funding/love/devotion.

Or that junior rankings have been a major factor. Thiem (who obviously is proof that junior rankings are important) had some wise words on the subject:

"In hindsight, the juniors is a sheltered circuit, said Thiem. There are always only a handful of top juniors. You are a big fish in a small pool. You are one of the stars, but when you come to ITF Futures level no one cares. In fact, they probably are extra motivated and want to beat you.

Life as a junior to life on the senior tour is completely different. To be a good junior does not mean you will have a good successful career as a pro. I had a very good final year, reaching the Roland Garros final and winning the Orange Bowl. Honestly, I thought it was going to be easier in the pros. But in my first year, I had so many first round losses in ITF Futures.

It took Thiem a full year to realise that he had to worker harder. When I lost five first rounds in a row, I remember both of them saying, Its going to be tough. Nobody said this was going to be easy. I never doubted that I could not make it one day. I just had to knuckle down.

It is really tough to make the step. You have to always work hard and get used to the levels of the professional tour from Futures to ATP Challenger Tour to the ATP World Tour. Each level is completely different."



-- Edited by Coup Droit on Wednesday 9th of August 2017 03:05:19 PM

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Indeed, if true certainly a bit of a surprise and very possibly a mistake, particularly regards Emily who it absolutely seemed right for from anything I am aware of. Jodie I just sense has a certain focus and determination, and has pleasingly essentially gone pretty full time to seniors in her final junior eligible year. So I am not so sure about her, she may well make this work for her.

I wonder how Katie Swan feels about things now. Of course much more success as a junior, but so into and seemingly enjoying the American lifesyle and bright that it seemed in many ways so right for her until I guess she and these around her kind of decided she had become almost 'too good' and professional was the way to go. I may say that I wonder about this very much in retrospect, and she could soon start turning things around, for I don't really recall people here particularly questioning her decision at the time.



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Very odd decisions.
I got the impression with Jodie that college was a fall back after some struggles earlier on in the year and some positive results recently may have changed her mind. Jodie in my opinion has the talent and ability to break into the 250-350 ranking fairly quickly.
As for Emily, she has not really progressed at senior level and i'm very surprised she has opted to go pro, but there are no funding issues being from a wealthy background.

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Really difficult to say what is the right thing to do really only the player and their families can make the decision. Finances and coaching resources are a major consideration for any player going on the futures tour but if that can be addressed and the player has a strong track record as a junior (top 10) and serious aspirations of making the WTA tour then there is a strong case for getting on with it. With decent A level grades University is still an option as a mature student particularly if their is the financial backing to support it.

College tennis I think offers more of an advantage to male players who are physicalky less mature at 18 than their female counterparts, particularly if you go to college as the No 1 player in that programme and one of the best 2-3 freshman nationally. You would then stand a chance of developing rapidly to dominate college tennis as a sophomore and go pro without graduating in the way Cam has done.

Emily Arb is probably the only female player close to this level from Britain to choose the college route and I understand completely why she has made the choices she has made, she had a very good but not stellar junior career and is academically strong and therefore a good fit in an institution that puts academics first but does transition players to the WTA (with two alumni playing at the Bank of the West WTA event this week).

If Emily App and Jodie (who have had stronger junior careers) want to avoid the politics of what number they play at college, are more serious about their tennis and don't want to compromise on that in order to pursue serious undergraduate study, futures is probably the best way to go. There is no point in keeping plan B open if plan A is well resourced and the only plan you really want to follow. I wish them well which ever route they follow, although it will make the college tennis thread a little less interesting and the futures threads more so!



-- Edited by Oakland2002 on Thursday 10th of August 2017 07:57:21 PM

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Yes, the college route certainly makes more sense for young men.

And I see from Parsa that 18-year-old Australian Alexandra Bozovic has also 'de-comitted' so there's more than just our two who can't make their minds up.

Emily Arb is obviously an interesting example of a player to go the college route. Although, as you say, not in the A1 top group of young players.

Maia Lumsden (with a similar profile) has also gone the college route (at Stirling).

I wonder what Katie Swan thinks about her choice, though, to do it the other way.

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I think we forget that Katie Swan is still a junior and would be in this current batch of girls going to college, ie. she is a direct contemporary of both Jodie and Emily App.

If her present junior rank ie. 200 were her JCH it would be a good choice but it was 2, 18 months ago and there was nothing to suggest she should take her foot off the metal in relation to pursuing a full time professional career, most of the girls she was loosing to deep into junior tournaments are now WTA top 200 some top 100.

The standard of college tennis doesn't get close to that so from a tennis perspective she would have 18 months fallow and now be starting her 4 years of college eligibility. Compare that to the experience she has had. Although still outside the top 300 WTA she has has had the support of British tennis already been part of the Fed Cup set up had a year playing 25K s understands the impact being a pro has on her body and that making it is less than straight forward. She still compares well to all the other girls in their late teens and early twenty somethings ie the other Katie's, Harriet etc... but it isn't easy and I don't think going to college now would make it any easier.

She is obviously a very talented young lady and it is all a question of perspective. Pursuing a degree as a mature student in the U.K. is still an option at 25 if she is not making a living on the WTA, at that point she will know that at 18 (well 16) she was too good to be a college tennis player and has given the pro tour her best effort she should have no regrets.

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I was quite surprised too but they must have compelling reasons for making the choice to de-commit and I hope it works out for them.

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I'm not at all criticising Katie Swan's decision, Oakie, she's not actually a player that I follow very closely. And nobody has 20-20 hindsight, even if it turns out not to be a great decision. And we're absolutely miles off that conclusion anyway.
But I was a little surprised that she didn't keep her options open a little longer. As you say, she is in the cohort () that would be going this year. And her earnings were not huge last year (and were never likely to be, however successful a year she was going to have). So it didn't seem to me necessary to burn her bridges re college a year early and sign with IMG.
I also meant the comment in a concerned sense to Katie - i.e. not having had as successful a year as she hoped, and with injuries such a horrid part of life, I do hope that Katie doesn't feel a bit down and regret it.

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KS going pro still feels like the right move. It felt like the obvious move at the time and I believe in her character and ability to overcome difficulties and improve. She has a lot of talent and potential to improve where she has weaknesses. I imagine she doesn't feel she made the wrong decision. Right now she has to understand and master her body to overcome this long run of injuries. And from recent interviews she's given, it sounds like she has found good help with that. It's been a dispiriting period with her but we have to believe better times are ahead.



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