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Scott Dunlop: Sharapova’s Dilemna

Sharapova signs a $70M 8-year deal with Nike.

While tennis’ stars don’t get paid as much as golf pros Tiger Woods, they certainly get a lot of value for their talent and celebrity. If companies are paying tennis stars this much, they probably believe that tennis is as strong as ever in the public’s awareness. Just ask Maria . . .

http://tennisexpressblog.blogspot.com/2010/01/sharapova-signs-70-million-deal-with.html

However, watching her play yesterday it is clear that she is not playing champion level tennis on court.

Her confidence in her physical ability to serve and hit big shots and her nervous impatience with herself does not bode well with the physicality now required in the majors. Her match lasted almost 3 1/2 hours…and it was she who caved. Perhaps we have another Kournikova developing…which is not a negative, simply a reality. I wonder if Nike cares?

A New Reality By Nicolas Pereira

This past week in the World Team Tennis ‘Bubble” I have seen the efforts to keep everyone safe while carrying on a team competition with around 60/70 players and coaches onsite. Counting organizers, officials, media, and support personnel are around 150 people trying hard to make this happen. I am very impressed by how the strict protocol has been handled and how everyone is invested in making this event a success, but The Open is a completely different scale of details.

ONcourt Interviews NGTL Co-Founder Yves Boulais

It does not matter that you get your rating playing locally or that you had spent an insidious amount of money playing the ITF junior tour tournaments. Your rating is your level of play (you get no bonus for playing more or playing far away). This allows us to break free of the ITF competitive structure potentially saving us time, money, and headache. We see this as a great opportunity to improve the logistic of our sport.

Brandon Burke (son of ACE President Doug Burke) Elected to WTA Board

As revealed in a recent news release issued by the WTA Tour – Brandon Burke has been elected to the WTA Board of Directors (to start officially in September). Oncourt got together with Brandon to delve a bit more into his background and to gain some insight into this wonderful appointment he has attained at such a young age.