Mixed doubles in tennis is a curious concept. Indeed, so are all the other doubles combos. They seem to exist solely to provide a way for tennis rabbits to stay in a tournament longer than the first round. Or maybe they are there to let the real players have a rest.
Watching the mixed doubles final of the Australian Open (for as long as it took to finish my drink and go, having shown up at my favourite sports bar thinking that the proper tennis was going to start at 1.30), I was struck by an interesting innovation. (Maybe it's not new, but I don't normally watch joke tennis.)Whenever a game got to deuce, the next point was the deciding point, as if to say, enough is enough, we know no one really wants to watch this stuff, so let's just play one more point and move on. The real entertainment will be along shortly.
What a jolly good idea, I thought, and why not take it to its logical conclusion? Why not apply it to women's tennis and, instead of just having a deciding point when it is 40-40, why not do it at the very beginning of the match and make each women's match be decided on a single point? And we could get rid of the arguments about paying women tennis players the same as men because, as Charlie Sheen said when asked why he paid women for sex, we wouldn't be paying them to play, but to just go away.