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A triumph for the Murray family – a day of shame for the overpaid bureaucrats of British tennis

First, congratulations to Andy Murray for his superb win at Wimbledon yesterday. And congratulations to his family for the way they have supported his career. But while the newspapers gush about yesterday being a great day for British tennis, the opposite is true. It was a day of shame for the overpaid, expenses-guzzling bureaucrats that live the high life mismanaging tennis in Britain.

The Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) has an annual budget of about £60m. Around £35m of this comes from Wimbledon, about £10m comes from us taxpayers and the rest comes from other sources. But where does this £60m go? It certainly hasn’t gone into helping any of Britain’s last 3 tennis champions – Greg Rusedski, Tim Henman and Andy Murray all developed outside the LTA coaching system.

A few years ago, the Government increased the amount of taxpayers money going to the LTA. In return, the LTA set some goals such as the average ranking of the top 5 British men being 101 – the LTA only achieved 204. 2010 marked a low point for British tennis when a British team (funding £60m) lost to Lithuania – population 3.2 million and total annual tennis spend £100,000. In fact, the dire state of British tennis was so bad, that in 2012, Sports England withheld around £10m in funding for the next 5-year period.

An awful lot of the LTA’s money seems to go into providing a very comfortable living for its bureaucrats. The boss of the LTA earns an almost unbelievable £640,000 a year plus reportedly has massive expenses junketing around the world to attend all the best tournaments.

The LTA has long been criticised for having too many committees with too many people creaming off substantial amounts of money from being on these committees (click on chart to see a little more clearly)

It is believed that many of these committee members also enjoy a jet-setting life thanks in part to the generosity of British taxpayers.

The LTA gets an awful lot of money and spends an awful lot of money – much of it on the comfort of its own panjandrums. But the LTA seems to have done little to nothing for tennis in Britain. As one commentator wrote: “The LTA has mismanaged its huge budget, failed to grow the game and at times seems intent on managing decline hidden by the annual splendour of the Wimbledon Championships

4 comments to A triumph for the Murray family – a day of shame for the overpaid bureaucrats of British tennis

  • Paris Claims

    Well done Andy. A British winner at Wimbledon is about as regular as Hayley’s Comet. Hopefully that will change in the future.

  • Andy Murray did more for British tennis in little over three hours yesterday than any bureaucrat could hope to achieve in thirty years.

  • right_writes

    This sums up communist Britain in microcosm David… “Supply and command”… The “supply” bit being only at the “command” of the bureaucracy… after IT has been sated.

    I have been saying for a long time that the EU is not our big problem… Rather it is our government system, it’s bureaucracy and its junketing politicians. The EU is a bureaucratic system designed by the sort of people that infest Whitehall… And the LTA, and the National Trust, and the BBC, and English Heritage, and the NHS, and……

  • @ right_writes – I think the EU IS a big problem (because it is everything I’m about to say but on a much larger scale) and the sooner we get out of it, the sooner we can all get back to concentrating efforts on other key issues.

    As I see it, the problem with our government (and this has been the case for decades) is that they take money in the form of taxation ostensibly for the purpose of helping those who need a bit of help.

    Whilst I would still maintain that no government should have the right to do this, most reasonable people would choose to help a truly deserving case of hardship if only on the rational self-interest basis that “it could be me one day and I would hope to find assistance”.

    However, a bit like how the EU has grown bit by bit from the rather benign trade agreement “we” voted on back in 1975 to become the monster it is today, so our own government have changed what we are taxed for beyond all recognition.

    As Mr Craig states in his article above, some £10 million is given to the LTA.

    I can’t remember being asked for my permission on this, can you?

    This, of course, is just the thin edge of a very large wedge and I believe that the answer lies in total reform of the whole governmental mandate – there are things the taxpayer really shouldn’t be paying for.

    By all means, if the LTA is something you are strongly in favour of then make a personal donation but to FORCE every tax-payer is just wrong.

    The same argument could be applied to a thousand and one other things which governments spend our money on and none of them concern “the sick, the poor and the elderly”.

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