Australia launching plan to save national tennis reputation

February 3rd, 2009 - 1:34 pm ICT by IANS  

Melbourne, Feb 3 (DPA) Amid the congratulations of another record-breaking Australian Open, tournament director Craig Tiley has denied that he will take a position with the US Tennis Association as they hunt for a new chief executive.But as celebrations die down in Melbourne, Australian tennis is awakening to the fact that it has not one man left in the ATP’s top 100.

A decade ago, the tennis powerhouse boasted a dozen in that ranking.

Last week, a group of retired Australian players reportedly including John Newcombe, Pat Rafter, Tony Roche and Jason Stoltenburg attended a meeting with Tennis Australia officials to offer suggestions on how to rescue the sport Down Under.

The meeting at the Crown casino was described to local press as “sensible and low-key.”

Tiley has already outlined a plan to revitalise coaching and development activities across the continent in hopes of saving the reputation of the Grand Slam host nation.

The South African, who was hired away several years ago from a university in the US said that he still has work to do in Melbourne.

“I’m planning to see this whole thing through,” Tiley said. “I’ve got a responsibility to rebuild the Australian game.”

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