Palm Beach News

Boca Has High Tennis Self-Esteem; It Don't Need Your Crummy Contest

It's the city where the three best American men at Wimbledon perfected their games, as well as the fourth-ranked woman in the women's circuit. It's home to the tennis academy of one of the best female players in history. It has a sparkling city court, one of the nation's best tennis resorts, plus a batch of private clubs with world-class facilities. It even has residents who star in wheelchair tennis.

But Boca Raton is not one of the nation's three best tennis towns. Hell, it's not even top ten. Boca got beat out by such tennis powerhouses as Midland, Michigan, where for the majority of the year, it's too cold to play.

What gives? Well, check out the USTA contest rules: Someone in the city has to nominate it, then work with others in the city to "create a joint entry." Then furnish a report about the city's demographics. Also, make a video about how much people in your city love tennis. Finally, five "letters of support" that attest to public-private partnerships... Oh hell! Lists are supposed to be unthreatening to lazy people, and this one is just exhausting.

The USTA will announce the winning city at the U.S. Open, and I hope the crowd roundly jeers. And whistles (it's tennis, after all).

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Thomas Francis