5. Incompetence. The USTA has a precious few full-time, professional tennis management and officiating people whose year-round job is to run tennis tournaments. Most are competent, some are outstanding, a few suck. No names will be named here, as one of them may stumble across this blog. Wouldn’t want to offend anyone. During the Open, the USTA pulls dozens of people out of their White Plains office whose ordinary job is, say, running the shipping department, and put them into jobs at The Open for which they have absolutely no qualifications and no abilities. The ensuing chaos, caused by pure incompetence, ignorance, and arrogance, can be entertaining.
A good (and rare at the US Open) example of a full-time professional doing a great job at something for which she has the training & experience is Tina T., who runs the kids’ tennis program year-round here at the Billie Jean King USTA National Tennis Center. During the US Open, she runs ballboy operations. All year long, she deals with kids and tennis. During the US Open, she deals with kids and tennis. Imagine the logic there. She actually knows what she’s doing during the tournament because it’s the same thing she does all year long. It’s amazing the USTA hasn’t assigned her to . . . oh I don’t know . . . driving a forklift during the US Open. Then the next typical step would be for the USTA geniuses to assign the guy in charge of office supplies at the White Plains office to head up the ballkids.