Sunday, July 8, 2012

Unequal Strokes For Unequal Folks

I noticed this morning that the Wikipedia page for Roger Federer stated that he had already beaten Andy Murray in today's Wimbledon final. Looking again now, I see that this statement has been removed, but I hope to see it back tomorrow.

Talking of Murray, he has at least contributed something sensible to the debate about whether women tennis players should be paid the same as men, on top of the obvious observations made by everyone except women tennis players that women's tennis is about as exciting as watching men's golf, and that the only excitement is whether they will actually have to play the same number of sets that men play as a minimum. Realistically, people only watch women's tennis either because they want to see short-skirted totty showing off their skanks or a bit of nip or because they want to watch a freak show, such as a Williams Brother playing an East European shotputting type.

Murray's point, echoed later by John McEnroe, is that women's tennis is so undemanding that the top women players can enter the doubles tournaments with no threat of either entry being detrimented by the other. For example, one of the Williams Brothers skipped off after the women's final yesterday to the women's doubles final, thus picking up two almost meaningless Wimbledon titles in a single day and more money than either Federer or Murray will earn today.

Take any period and compare the number of women who have won both their Grand Slam singles title and the women's doubles title at the same tournament with the number of men who have done the same; the former outnumber the latter by around 10 to 1. The result of this is that the top women get paid more than men in total, not just more per set. See here for Murray's comments and the stats.

The simple answer, of course, is to make women play 5 sets at slams. But, apart from the fact that this would make it difficult to complete a tournament in the traditional 2 weeks (perhaps they could have a women only first week before the main event started - see how many show up to watch that!), I don't think anyone could bear watching 5 sets of women's pitty-patty anyway.

1 comment:

  1. Isn't it 10 to 1 because the men's final ends after the men's doubles final?