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Post Info TOPIC: Starting itf as a British player on low income
Ned


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Starting itf as a British player on low income


Why does it seem so difficult to get a foot in , when your son is top 50 in the uk, works his but off is a 2.2 with out a single match play, but gained from tournaments only. the new player pathway also excludes him as the old one missed him, and the next hoop to jump through is to try and get into top 150 itf in a year; seems impossible , it's depressing actually when you know you have what it takes .



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Jo Burton


Tennis legend

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We feel your pain, Ned !

How old is your son? Is he still in school? What are his plans? Has he played any of the GB junior ITFs?

It's a hard, hard road and the LTA don't seem to want to make it any easier.......

(PS might be better for a mod to put this in the general tennis section).



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Junior player

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So many players in the same situation, unfortunately tennis is very expensive :0(

There are 3 ITFs in the UK in September - try and get into those, at least travel costs will be kept to a minimum. Always players looking to save money by sharing a room.
Need more mens ITFs in the UK especially May to August - how could it not be financially viable to run them as demand would be very high.....noticed many events in Turkey/Romaina were cancelled, should have moved them to the UK!

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Improver

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Feel your pain too.

The LTA have no interest in late bloomers. They chose their players at 10u (plenty of those that have dropped out) The few left, are all they have any interest in. ( The LTA has invested in them so... )
It feels like at 14, your past it for any help of any kind whatsoever.

Just to emphasise this, a leading racket supplier informed me that its their policy only to sponsor under 14s.
Really useful reply, as one doesnt grow younger, missed the boat there too.

Puberty, which can be as young, as 10 for some or as old as 16, for others, is a great leveller.

As the age of top players appears to be getting older, in the top rankings, this does appear to be short sighted.
Maybe if they widen the player base, by not limiting it to such a minute group, there might be more Successful Brits.
Instead of 1 person getting loads of support & funding. Why not open that top coach knowledge etc and take a larger group to ITF tournaments & spread that out over top 50 kids for example.
Rather than putting all your eggs in 1 basket & then bemoaning Brits lack of success, spread the risk.
Its not as though the LTA is poor!

Do British ITFs, British Tour and gain experience from those cheapest options but dont hold your breath for any funding.


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Top national player

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Puberty does all sorts of things to kids, and especially for boys usually comes later than 14 yrs. Not to look again at players post puberty is short sighted/ silly/ ridiculous, whichever way you look at it.

The LTA seem prone to very stubborn strategy making. My area of work includes that of strategy development/ implementation, and organisations that do not use learning approaches are rarely effective in their use of strategies. The LTA seems a good example of this. Oh, and learning means seeking feedback outside your comfort zone and the nodding heads around your own table. If the LTA really wanted a strategy that would get more young people interested in playing tennis (including teenagers), and then maximise their potential, they would go for a strategy that offered multiple pathways, and make some of those less dependent on the LTA itself, but still able to access resources. Football has shown often enough that many players can really come through in their latter teens, post puberty, and the opportunity for players to do this and still pursue the game seriously should be facilitated.

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Grand Slam Champion

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I hope Ned has seen this, since it has been moved to the General section

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Social player

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I too agree and have said this on a few forums and found there are many in the same boat. I actually think another org is needed so lta do not have the monopoly. How this would ever happen I have no idea but the Lta seem untouchable.

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Club Coach

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Your son is playing at a level where the game is essentially an amateur hobby and where there is clearly no entitlement to support. I doubt somehow it would make a scrap of difference whether there were other parallel organisations to the LTA. All would face the problem of endless demands vying for a share of finite resources.

A thing to consider if that most players internationally, who do make the ATP ranks probably do so without much federation support, if any at all. Look at all the players coming out of eastern Europe or South America. All those federations are skint but somehow the talented, or some of them, make it through regardless. Inevitably, many of those players will come from comfortable backgrounds where they can afford to pay for their own development. Nadal didn't go to an academy either and was taught at home.

Were I in your shoes I would go and see a top level coach, more than one possibly. In would ask him or her for advice on what they consider your son's training and playing needs would be and work out a development plan for him as best you can. Needs must. The pushier you are in that regard, the more doors you'll open. There are a few books worth reading too, e.g Nick Saviano's.



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Tennis legend

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You make some good points, Eddie, as always.

Although I have big issues with the LTA, I also am amazed how many parents I hear complaining about lack of direct funding. And this is often parents of young adults, not kids, and not particularly strong players either. One mother of a 21 year-old was arguing strongly that her son (CH 1700 or so) had been cheated out of a top 50 career because of lack of funding.

As you say, most other countries do not directly fund either. Even France and the ones who do, it is very limited - again, one GB player (age about 23 at the time and ATP about 1400) was convinced that all French players of a similar profile were being directly helped (not true).

Now, part of the problem here is the 'them-and-us' attitude that the LTA seemingly likes to encourage. Which is toxic. And, as said, if the LTA did their job and created a thriving tennis industry, it would be less important either.

But in terms of actual dosh, most players in other countries are 'doing for themselves', as Eurythmics/Aretha Franklin et al would say. And even in France, mid-rank players are generally supported by their parents, play team tennis in two countries, play money tournaments, anything and everything to try and survive - there's no umbrella funding system.



-- Edited by Coup Droit on Thursday 9th of August 2018 12:24:47 PM

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Improver

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I think Coup hit the nail on the head.

Its the Toxic us & then attitude, which is encouraged by the LTA.
The money bit is seen as the Holy Grail because unlike France there is no club scene unless you want to play doubles
(Generally mixed & on the friendly side as well).
So without the funding, theres no support. Not just on court, but nutritionally, S&C, physio, mental etc. Sink or swim.
People just muddle along, but the perception is the chosen ones, get all this.
Rightly or wrongly- lol I have no idea.



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Club Coach

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The LTA, Coup, acts as the gamekeeper to the milords of the Wimbledon Estate. Caps are duly doffed and the county blazers generally do as they're told. If they behave themselves, they may occasionally be afforded a glimpse into Elysium or, more occasionally still, be invited to climb those hallowed steps themselves.

If you don't think that's true, consider this piece lifted from the Daily Mail (who run one of the more informative tennis sections offered by online media):-

"There was an eyebrow-raising intervention four days ago when Philip Brook, Chairman of the All England Club, declared Wimbledon's support for the changes ahead of any announcement from the LTA. While this is typical of how British tennis does not act in concert, it also raised the question on whose behalf he was speaking.

'The AELTC believes that it is in the best interests of tennis to ensure that the Davis Cup has a strong and successful future, and it is therefore supportive of the proposals of the ITF and the Kosmos group to address the challenges currently faced by the Davis Cup.'

But Wimbledon has no vote in the matter, and you would think it unlikely that there is a universal view among members about such radical changes to a historic competition."

In other words, Wimbledon does exactly as it likes. (Little wonder they apparently don't get on quite so well with the cobbers at Tennis Australia, tennis proles who genuinely do run their championships for public benefit rather than for keeping the privileged few in clover.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/tennis/article-6039553/ATP-Tour-Finals-leave-Londons-O2-Arena-venues-invited-bid.html



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Social player

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I dont believe any kid should have direct funding. The draper years of matrix funding was a joke. There are still the same names getting support from the LTA and that will never change, rumour has it into the thousands but hey good luck to them. The reason for suggesting another org was not for direct funding but to provide competition. Clubs who can chose to affiliate with one or the other or both . Rankings that provide a sense of progress , more team ethics etc etc. I know its wishful thinking and something I believe tsuk once tried but we can dream. The LTA can then focus on professional tennis and leave the amateur hobbyists to run their own show and perhaps one or two may emerge from a very different support network


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Social player

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I cant find the org that sprang up a few years ago. I thought it was tsuk or something similar but seems to have vanished unless Im very wrong about the name

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Junior player

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Kolohead wrote:

I cant find the org that sprang up a few years ago. I thought it was tsuk or something similar but seems to have vanished unless Im very wrong about the name


You were correct KH,  Tsuk used to run matchplays etc at Sutton and was run by David Fuchs. Barry Fulcher runs the Progress Tour another alternative 



-- Edited by Elegant Point on Friday 10th of August 2018 11:52:02 AM

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Strong Club Player

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Is this what you were looking for?
www.tennisuk.net/TEMS/

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