British players must stand on own feet as LTA cuts handouts

 

The days of the Lawn Tennis Association handing out significant financial support to a wide range of British players are coming to an end.

From the start of next year the governing body will stop all cash funding to singles players over 24 and to doubles players of any age. Players aged between 17 and 24 will have to meet more stringent criteria before receiving their money.

In recent years singles players have each received up to £48,000 a year and doubles players up to £27,000 a year to pay for travel and coaching. Under the new scheme the number of players eligible for the highest level of funding is expected to drop from 16 to six. Even those who qualify for the funding – and they will need to have higher world rankings than in the past to do so – will have to repay to the LTA 20 per cent of their prize money, up to the total they receive from the governing body.

Older players and doubles players will be eligible for continued financial support under the LTA’s tournament bonus scheme, which tops up prize money won at events beneath the main men’s and women’s tours. Elite players will also continue to benefit from the scientific and medical support at the National Tennis Centre at Roehampton, while LTA coaches, such as the renowned doubles expert Louis Cayer, will still be available to work with them.

The cutbacks will see the LTA’s total spending on elite players drop from £12m a year to £10m. There has been general belt-tightening at the governing body, which had been spending cash from its reserves and had more than £10m of funding from Sport England withheld this year because of a fall in the number of people playing tennis.

Wimbledon’s 40 per cent increase in prize money this summer will also eat into the annual payment the LTA receives from the tournament’s surplus. In addition the LTA will soon have to find more cash for prize money at the Aegon Championships at Queen’s Club. From 2015 the tournament is being upgraded from a “250” event (with 250 ranking points awarded to the winner) to a “500”, with a consequent boost in the prize fund.

Meanwhile the LTA is still working on how best to capitalise on Andy Murray’s success. Talks are continuing after LTA officials met the Murray camp in New York this summer to discuss using his image in more of their publicity campaigns.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project