Qualifying for the women’s tournament began on Friday, so we packed up three Babolat Star 5 stringing machines and left Durham, North Carolina Wednesday morning to arrive in the stringing afternoon to get the room cleaned and organized, and to get the machines set up. I strung 4 rackets that afternoon for women playing in the qualifying, but this was really more of a travel, planning, and organizing day.
As you can see in this picture, we use Babolat Star 5 stringing machines. They are electronic, linear constant pull machines. Mine is the one furthest in the back. By Saturday, we will add a fourth machine to the mix. At the start, we use a tension meter to make sure every machine is pulling to the reference tension, and we also try to string the same racket on different machines to make sure the rackets come off the machines the same.
Last year Game.Set.Match Tennis strung over 600 rackets just at the ATP Legg Mason Tennis Classic. There is some uncertainty about how many rackets we will do this year, because the draw has been reduced from 48 to 32 players, and some of the bigger names and more frequent stringers from last year are in London for the Olympics. People like Bagdhatis, Davydenko, Stepanek, Monfils, Isner, and the Bryan Brothers. Adding 32 women to the mix for the WTA Tour event will probably not offset the loss.