By Astride Astrid. Tennis. Published at Thursday, March 29th, 2018 - 11:24:50 AM.
Installing Black Code 4S was actually a lot less trouble than expected. Typically geometric or textured polys can be a bear for the fingers but 4S wasn't terribly onerous even though the edges were definitely noticeable. Coil memory seemed typical for a polyester but with a little care tangles and kinks were easily avoided. As with most geometric or textured polys installing crosses comes with some risk of damage due to the sharp edges. I didn't have any issues but I'd still encourage other stringers to take their time installing crosses—especially if they're blending Black Code 4S with another softer string.
This new innovation created in collaboration with French tech outfit PIQ which is also working on bringing more sensor based analytics to other sports like golf and skiing is part of two big trends. The obvious trend is the data driven way to understand your game. As Genie Bouchard said at Friday’s product launch at the Manhattan Plaza Racquet Club “people can tell you when you’re hitting the ball but there’s nothing more accurate than technology.” The metrics she is most interested in are where in her stroke she typically makes contact with the ball and the speed of her arm on groundstrokes.
All told the Grand Slam Board on paper at least got a lot right with these changes. It is sure to be an adjustment for all and much will also depend on how strictly some of these changes are enforced. If handled properly however these should make tennis more exciting and improve the image of tennis as a whole.
Both of those solutions boil down to money. Naturally for many in a 128-player draw that first round prize money is a big deal which is why they will show up to play even if they go in knowing they are unfit and may have to pull the plug mid-match. As a concession to that driving factor players will now be allowed to collect fifty percent if they withdraw after noon on site on Thursday but before the main draw begins. Coupled with this players who are knowingly unfit to play and still opt to compete could face a fine up to the total amount of their first-round prize money if they fail to finish the match or “perform below professional standards.” Together these two rules should encourage players to make the smart choice and subsequently improve the overall optics of the sport.
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