American Noah Rubin, ranked 225th, believes hitting “rock bottom” will force change in tennis.
With no tournaments and earning potential on hold, these are worrying times for players such as 24-year-old Rubin.
He believes the sport needs to hit the buffers during the coronavirus pandemic so that things can change for the better for the sport’s lesser lights.
Rubin has earned $33,000 this season, although deduct expenses and that doesn’t offer much financial security, especially with professional tennis on hold until at least mid-July.
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Through the conversations I had so far, I’m worried about the state of tennis when we come back
“It’s a tough thing to say, but I am almost hoping that it hits rock bottom,” Rubin told Eurosport’s Tennis Legends podcast.
“But I am hoping because I have spoken to ATP and WTA before and the urgency to change tennis, hasn’t been there.
“So, I am hoping that rock bottom almost like lights a fire under their butts and says ‘hey, we’re in trouble. Other sports aren’t in trouble as much as we are, let’s do something.”
Rubin says tennis bodies must take radical steps to sustain the depth of the Tour, rather than just apply band-aids that will have no long-term benefit.
“We have some of the most incredible minds in the world in the sport of tennis,” New Yorker Rubin said. “I think we can use everything together. The brands and all the actual money that comes out of it and create something that’s bigger and better than ever.
“But at the same time, through the conversations I had so far, I’m worried about the state of tennis when we come back.”
Rubin says that while he can scrape by for a while, he knows of friends on Tour who are struggling to pay rent.
“I am talking to my friends right now and within the next two, three, four months they are going to be questioning how they are going to pay for rent or mortgage,” he said.
“To say we can’t even help players at 150 in the world when we’re having these issues. There must be something wrong with the sport or the system itself.”
Australian Open quarter-finalist Ons Jabeur believes the tennis season should resume next March at Indian Wells rather than resuming the season later this year adding it would not be fair when calculating ranking points.
“I don’t think it’s a good idea to start the season this year. Start the season again next year in March,” Jabeur said in Eurosport’s Tennis Legends vodcast.
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