The Pilot Pen pulls from New Haven CT
In probably the last tune-up before the US Open here in New England was a very substantial Tournament called The Pilot Pen. Prior to that it was sponsored by Volvo Autos. When I moved to New England, it just happened to be the last year of that Volvo sponsored the New Haven Ct. Tennis Center.
What I am here to say is more about 'Why' these great Tennis sponsorships seem to dump one Tennis Tier tournament after another. This year as in the past, I was granted Box seats for select Day & Night sessions because i did a lot of work for the Tournament Committee. Normally my wife will attend an Evening Session with me and this year I kept mentioning to her that I had a strange feeling we will not be enjoying this tournament much longer here in New Haven based upon the attendance I am witnessing during both Day & Night Sessions. And why is attendance down in Tennis?
Well for one, Tennis lacks big time. I understand that it is considered a concentration sport where quiet is paramount to allow the Players their best opportunity to play their best game. But people love to scream & cheer for their favorite players which is what Tennis does for the game. It takes away the excitement of the battle by limiting one's ability to express themselves as they would during say a Davis Cup match where much more latitude was given to the Audience because the Officials know they are representing a Country and how can you keep a Country's Cheerleaders down & quiet.
But one last important issue is the dwindling list of Star Power in Tennis. Who's stepping up and filling Andre's shoes? Can't say it's Roger Federer because he's just way too calm and how about Rafa? yeah he's got the appeal we are craving for tennis excitement & crowd appreciation but I guess that's not enough to sustain the Sport the way we need it to be.
If you were to attend a Day Session at the US Open & attend a Night Session there as well, what an incredible difference. Night Matches at the Open are the stuff movies are made from. People are far more vocal for their favorite Players and Tournament Officials try hard as they can to place their biggest Draw power for night matches. This unfortunately didn't happen in New Haven because the biggest Stars of Tennis have begun to go elsewhere for their last Tuneup before the Open, leaving New Haven out.
I believe last year, James Blake was the #1 Seed whereas this year I think it was N. Davedenko. Can you imagine him being the #1 Seed? The point is, I'm not saying he's not deserving of being considered good enough but when you think #1 Seed, you want someone who's currently ranked in the Top 5 or better.
So New Haven is once again in search for a Sponsor, which they're no stranger to. I'm sure they will get one before the Open starts next year but at what price this time? Unless they can get serious draw power they will have a problem and the best are going to Canada the week before the Open.
Got any solutions for New Haven Ct.?