At this point, it’s an undeniable fact of nature that Janko Tipsarevic has the biggest mouth on Earth and all surrounding planets. In the past he has criticized the WTA, branded Amelie Mauresmo a “pervert” for her sexuality, criticized the WTA, compared his “friend” Ana Ivanovic to “a truck on steroids” (I still don’t understand…what does that even MEAN??!!), criticized the WTA, claimed that he stays well away from all gay ATP players, oh, and he criticized the WTA too.
Today, after Gilles Simon and the rest of his crew idiotically kicked the door wide open at Wimbledon, the Serb has once again stepped in and decided to put his Grand Canyon-sized mouth where it isn’t wanted, tackling his favourite topic once more.
‘It’s ridiculous that women get the same prize money at Slams. They should at least play Best of Five [...] I don’t underestimate Azarenka’s achievements, but the best time (for women) is over. It was when the Williams sisters and Clijsters, Henin and Mauresmo played at the top of their game’
Let’s get one thing straight, the Best of 5 vs Best of 3 argument is perhaps the most laughable, desperate and tired argument in history. It has beeen battered to death yet keeps on coming back. The fact remains that if those poor, unfairly treated and persecuted men really have a problem with women playing less sets for the same prize money, then they should be campaigning for best of 3 sets at slams. If not, then they should shut up. Full stop.
The rest of Tipsarevic’s quote is not unlike Simon and co.’s comments at Wimbledon. The thing is, Tipsarevic obviously isn’t actually wrong in stating that the WTA was better a few years back. It certainly was. But this entire argument is completely perplexing. How is this remotely relevant? What does that have to do with anything? Prize money isn’t calculated based on subjective preferences, nor is it based on the revenue each tournament makes each year. It’s a fixed sum and equal because men and women play alongside each other as equals. Plus, every TV deal, sponsor and other major revenue source pays for the men and women as a joint package regardless of whether men or women are on top.
But, hey, let’s just consider Tiparevic and Simon’s argument for the hell of it. Tennis is all about phases and eras. There are countless stats to support the fact that previous WTA era was far more popular and famous than the then-weaker and volatile ATP (yet the WTA players were being paid less prize money) and the tables have turned over the past few years. When the big 3 cease to be, well, the big 3, it’s fairly obvious that - if they even make it to the top - the current ATP youngsters won’t be nearly as popular or dominant as the current top players. So, the only resolution to the argument the ATP players have wasted so much of our time on would be to give equal prize money, then take it back, give it again, take it back again, give it again and so on based on the revenue and interest each era of each tour creates. That would, of course, mean the male players would likely be paid less than the women at times. In what world is any of this remotely realistic or plausible?
The entire “debate” just seems like an excuse for most ATP players (and it isn’t just Simon and Tipsarevic) to flex the muscles of their offensively humongous and extraordinarily obese egos and assert that they’re far more superior to the women. The good news is that regardless of how much Simon, Tipsarevic, Tsonga and co. bitch and moan, nothing is ever going to change. And that’s how it should be.