Changes Being Made to the ATP Rankings in Tennis

A Wilson tennis ball used at the US Open lying on the hard court.
A Wilson tennis ball used at the US Open lying on the hard court. (Getty Images)

If you are a big tennis fan, you might be aware of ATP Rankings. However, they can be complicated and while you may know that it reveals the top tennis players, you might not be aware of how it is calculated or what it really means. Indeed, there are going to be changes to the ATIP Rankings as we know it. Let’s take a look at what ATP Rankings are and the changes we can expect to see to these rules.

A ball is pictured at the French Tennis Open, at Roland Garros, in Paris, on May 29, 2008. AFP PHOTO / Jacques Demarthon (Photo credit should read JACQUES DEMARTHON/AFP via Getty Images)

What are ATP Rankings?

First of all, it is important to understand what the ATP Rankings are. This is used by the Association of Tennis Professionals in order to decide what players are going to enter and play in singles and doubles tournaments over the course of a year. In addition, it is going to assist with the seeding process. This type of system has been used since 1973.

Players are able to win points in the ATP Rankings through their performances. For example, they are going to get points by reaching later stages of a tournament, as well as the number of points increasing if it is a big competition. For example, the four Grand Slam tournaments are going to offer the most points for tennis players to earn. It is essential to realise that points are dropped after 52 weeks.

Currently, there are players with a lot of points in the ATP Rankings. For example, if we look at singles tournaments, number one is Novak Djokovic with 12,030 points. In second is Rafael Nadal, as well as Roger Federer sitting in fifth place. In the doubles, Robert Farah sits at the top with 8,530 points, with Juan Sebastián Cabal in close second with 8,440 points. A lot of these points will dictate.

What are the ATP Rankings Changes?

While the ATP Rankings have been in place for over 40 years, there are going to be changes that come into play this year and last until 2022. This is an attempt to ensure that the system remains fair and every tennis player has an equal opportunity to hold their place in the ATP Rankings.

Points would be dropped after 52 weeks. But this was hardly going to be fair when tournaments were cancelled in 2020. People who had not played tennis in around a year could remain high in the rankings. For others, it meant the chance to climb the table and unfairly move up spots just because their tournaments were allowed to go ahead.

So, the new system is going to change the points that can be earned. For those events that were held in 2019 but not in 2020, the points will be 50 percent of what they would normally be. In addition, in 2021, they will be counted as 100 percent. It is going to be what is going to work best for the tennis player. It will not be until August 2022 that the old ATP Rankings will be reinstated.

Written by Rhian Jones

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