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    The worst tennis "pro" in the world?
    #1
    Brad Gilbert mentioned on ESPN that Taylor Townsend once played a 69 yr old woman in an ITF circuit a few years ago. That got me curious so I did some search, and came up with this article. It turned out, it was a second round qualifying match for a $25k event, meaning someone lost to this 69 yr old.

    https://www.tennis-x.com/xblog/2016-04-11/22532.php

    Rosalyn Small lost 6-0, 6-1 to Gail Falkenberg. And here is her career record.

    https://www.wtatennis.com/players/pl...small#overview
    https://www.itftennis.com/procircuit...erid=100229720

    She has lost all matches in the first rounds of qualifying, with most of them being double bagels. And yet she has earned $3164 for her career. How did she even get into those tournaments? Is there any minimum requirement for playing in the qualifying for the lowest level tournaments?
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    #2
    I don't know anything about qualifying, I have a feeling she mostly plays small tournaments not part of a pro circuit.

    She is looking for sponsors:
    https://www.gofundme.com/f/2019-tennis-tour
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    #3
    Playing in the second round (after a first round bye) today at New Haven, CT in the Oracle Challenger Series, Small lost 0-6, 0-6 in 34 minutes, bringing her "pro" career singles record to 0-65.

    https://www.tennisexplorer.com/match-detail/?id=1831749
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    #4
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    #5
    Quote Originally Posted by NotDutra5 View Post
    This writer correctly points out that she is not cheating, and one has to admire her chasing her dream.

    I'm not sure whether I agree with the concerns that her participation hurts the integrity of the sport. It is similar to the Olympic Games allowing one entry per country, resulting in a sprinter from the Marshall Islands running a 12.81 in the preliminary round of the m100.
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    #6
    Quote Originally Posted by wamego relays champ View Post
    This writer correctly points out that she is not cheating, and one has to admire her chasing her dream.
    At this point, things have gone from admiration for chasing a dream to disdain for hanging on to a delusion.

    After 7 years on the circuit and an 0-65 record which includes mostly 6-0 6-0, she should realize it's time to get the help she needs to improve her skills or leave the pro circuit.

    What's surprising is not only that there are pro tennis tournaments with essentially zero qualifications for entry, but that some of those low-level tournaments actually pay people who lose in the first round, as evidenced by her nonzero career earnings.

    But she's not necessarily the worst tennis "pro". There may be some worse than her, but the difference is they stop entering pro tournaments soon after getting whooped by real pros. She's just the most persistent of the terrible pros, with the longest losing streak.
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    #7
    Quote Originally Posted by wamego relays champ View Post
    This writer correctly points out that she is not cheating, and one has to admire her chasing her dream.

    I'm not sure whether I agree with the concerns that her participation hurts the integrity of the sport. It is similar to the Olympic Games allowing one entry per country, resulting in a sprinter from the Marshall Islands running a 12.81 in the preliminary round of the m100.
    But she is not from a country underrepresented in tennis. And she is participating in more than "preliminary rounds." No, she is not cheating. She is just gaming the system, and the system is flawed.

    Every tournament has a "wait list" for entry, usually to the qualifying draw. But if you have enough ranking points to qualify for the main draw in another tournament, why would you take a chance to put your name on the wait list? If no one withdraws, you won't get the chance to play (and earn points and money). So this list often includes people who have no ranking points, like a tennis instructor in a local club. Those people get double bageled in the opening round, and no one really hears about them.

    People like Ros Small have figured out that you can do the same in multiple tournaments instead of just once a year, and there will be enough withdrawals so that they can play. But it's one thing to take the spot in a qualifying draw, and get a hundred dollars prize money. It's another thing to take a spot in the main draw and get the first round bye. Every one of the first round loser in the tournament could have easily beaten her, and yet she got more prize money and ranking points than all of them. So how was this even allowed to happen?

    First, this New Haven tournament had only four players in the qualifying draw. Only two players were eliminated there. And then there were last minute withdrawals. Apparently, the two players who lost did not stay around long enough, so that the lucky loser spot was given to Small, who did not even play in the qualifying. And because the withdrawal took place after the main draw was determined, she took the place of a seeded player, who had a first round bye. I don't know how the last problem could be prevented, other than redrawing the field, which is impractical. But the former problem could be avoided if the qualifying draw is bigger, and there are more than two players to choose from for the lucky loser.
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    #8
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    OTH, few athletes maintain a "perfect" record throughout their career.
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    #9
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    It looks like her 1st and 2nd serves are the same, so that probably cuts down some on practice time.
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    #10
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    I suspect it has cost her rather more than $3164 to play all those tournaments once you factor in things like travel costs and accommodation.
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