What are the Singaporeans complaining about
Hot, cold, beautiful. Singapore - a conclusion
How was it actually in Singapore? What was good - what was bad? And: should the WTA Finals stay here? Because 2019 could continue elsewhere.
By Florian Goosmann from Singapore
Finally, a few words about Singapore. Nice here! Great clean city, lots of green, two botanical gardens, everything safe. Lots of construction sites, okay, but the new houses have to come from somewhere. Above all, the players' hotel, the Marina Bay Sands Hotel, which consists of three towers with a huge ship planted on the roof that serves as a swimming pool, is absurd. Caroline Wozniacki wants to do a few more laps in it tomorrow.
It's hot too, a good 30 degrees during the day and 25 degrees at night, humid, mostly cloudy. What you don't complain about when you look at Germany. The problem: It's also freezing cold. Namely in all buildings, for example the shopping malls, which are here on every corner, because individual shops have almost died out. Just buy something to eat? Take a shortcut? Off to the mall, preferably in a winter jacket.
With all thoughts about environmental degradation and global warming, you could also "only" cool to 22 or 23 degrees instead of minus 500, you would save a lot of energy, people would catch cold less, could wear short clothes throughout. It would all be easier. But it's the same in the USA. And comes an American with such absurd ideas.
Watch training people!
The tournament itself? OK. Good games, bad games, how to play RTL- would say eve. A happy and well-deserved winner with Caroline Wozniacki. Part very great doubles. The Singapore Indoor Stadium was sometimes half, sometimes three quarters full. The fans who were visiting were thrilled. It's a shame that the training pitches were very hidden, a good ten minutes around a thousand corners. And for fans only to visit on some days. What was a shame, professional training is still fine to watch. Especially also double exercises, because you can learn a lot as a club trainer and player.
Sure, it's often a mundane practice, but on days off there is also concrete preparation. Darren Cahill, Simona Halep's coach, practiced winners after the Wozniacki debacle and played himself with Slice on the backhand in order to imitate the upcoming opponent Svitolina (without success).
And Sascha Bajin, the ex-Williams hitting partner who is now training Caroline Wozniacki, was happy to finally be able to play kick serves in preparation for the Garcia match (with success). Oh yes, super nice guy, by the way, Sascha (we'll have an interview in the coming days).
Caroline Garcia carries everyone away
The players were also easy to handle, but what really stood out were Caroline Garcia's press conferences. The Frenchwoman had not expected an appearance in Singapore and gave many good answers even after her semi-final defeat against Venus Williams, despite initial disappointment. Unlike Williams, but we've already had one of those (and it didn't get much better over the course of the week). A British colleague asked WTA boss Steve Simon whether the WTA could do anything. "Not much, she was there, she answered," said Simon, he seemed a bit resigned himself. Williams convinced on the pitch that not everyone has a fighter heart like the 37-year-old.
A few more words about Simona Halep. She ended 2017 as the world's number one, and of course the online trolls came back straight away. No Grand Slam tournament won, worst number 1 ever and so on. What bullshit. Halep played the most consistent tennis of all for 52 weeks. And to be the best in the world (in numbers!) At something is great - who of us can say that about himself?
Roger Federer, one of the few who can actually do that, sees it the same way. "If you are number 1, you deserve it. You shouldn't take anything away from Halep for a second - or someone else who has fulfilled their lifelong dream. (...) It's not always just about Grand Slams." Halep, who was honored on Sunday, pleased Federer's words. "I feel proud that Roger Federer talks about me like that," she said.
Oh yes, keyword Switzerland. Martina Hingis stops, for the third time. And was surprised that no one had trumpeted this before. Neither the tennis colleagues nor the Swiss journalists who were here, they knew it. "We wanted to wait until you say that," they said while having a nice chat with Hingis in the press center. So it is still possible to keep something secret these days. You just have to want to.
What about Singapore’s future?
By the way, you don't yet know how things will go in Singapore, even if you want to be here. The finals are set here up to and including 2018, after which Manchester, Prague, St. Petersburg and Shenzhen also want to play. There will be a decision in April, said Steve Simon at the year-end press conference of the WTA, at which they were "excited" about many things, such as the three new number 1 players this year (Pliskova, Muguruza, Halep), the two new major winners (Ostapenko, Stephens), the more than 2,300 match broadcasts and the training sessions via livestream. And about the cooperation with Porsche and the corresponding Porsche Race to Singapore, "which enabled us to write a story about the race to the WTA Finals over the course of the year", as WTA President Micky Lawler emphasized.
At the moment you are generally trying around a lot at the WTA, also with Facebook double broadcasts, but one number came as a surprise: That Sports Business Journal found out, according to Lawler, that the age of TV viewers had recently dropped from 56 to 52 years, 41 percent of viewers are under 34. Is tennis back in fashion with kids? It would be nice!
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