| By Steven Kaplan

Stacy Allaster, head of the Women's Tennis Association (WTA)just announced that the WTA player's are "ready and willing" to play five sets at Grand Slams. "All you have to do is ask us."

The ongoing debate over the match format was heightened by Andy Murray, as well as by French player Gilles Simon, who said that men deserve more because they "provided greater entertainment." I think many would argue with Andy and Gilles that "length" does not necessarily equate to "entertainment value," and women deserve equal pay.

Critics of the new format point to the potential for scheduling conflicts as a result of longer matches.

I say let women play longer if they would like. Many fans would welcome scheduling conflicts that put more main draw singles matches on the smaller courts at the U.S. Open.

Steven Kaplan

Steve Kaplan is the owner and managing director of Bethpage Park Tennis Center, as well as director emeritus of Lacoste Academy for New York City Parks Foundation, and executive director and founder of Serve &Return Inc. Steve has coached more than 1,100 nationally- ranked junior players, 16 New York State high school champions, two NCAA Division 1 Singles Champions, and numerous highly-ranked touring professionals. Many of the students Steve has closely mentored have gone to achieve great success as prominent members of the New York financial community, and in other prestigious professions. In 2017, Steve was awarded the Hy Zausner Lifetime Achievement Award by the USTA. He may be reached by e-mail at StevenJKaplan@aol.com.