Tennis has produced some of the most famous and highest paid female athletes of all time. Iconic names such as Chris Everett, Martina Navratilova, and Serena Williams lead the list. So it’s ironic and sad that tennis is sexist and behind the times.
Why do women tennis players play a best of three sets to win a match, while men play a best of five? It’s as if those running the Women’s Tennis Association are saying that women do not have the stamina that men have. Considering that females are completing crazy Ultramarathons just like men, it’s clearly not true that men have more stamina than women. It’s time for tennis to recognize this.
Some might point to other sports that make different rules for men and women. For example, WNBA players use a smaller basketball than men do in the NBA. In golf, the tees are moved up for women. I don’t think these differences should exist, but at least these sports could argue that, on average, men have larger hands than women or, on average, are stronger than women and can drive a golf ball further. But why use different courses and balls for men and women when they are not competing against each other? It sends a message of sexism.
I never would have thought that tennis would send such a sexist message. It’s time for old fashioned clubs like Wimledon to take a look at the women players and realize they can play just as many sets as men.
If the tennis powers that be were to disclaim the argument that women have worse stamina than men, then why have women play fewer sets than men? An alternate explanation would be that they don’t think the public wants to watch more than three sets of women playing tennis, and that’s even worse.