Association of Tennis Professionals

Last updated
Association of Tennis Professionals
SportProfessional tennis
AbbreviationATP
FoundedSeptember 1972;48 years ago (1972-09)
LocationUnited Kingdom (HQ)
Monaco
United States
Australia
Chairman Flag of Italy.svg Andrea Gaudenzi
CEO Flag of Italy.svg Massimo Calvelli
Official website
www.atptour.com
Current season: 2021 ATP Tour

The Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) is the governing body of the men's professional tennis circuits - the ATP Tour, the ATP Challenger Tour and the ATP Champions Tour.

Contents

It was formed in September 1972 by Donald Dell, Jack Kramer, and Cliff Drysdale to protect the interests of professional tennis players, and Drysdale became the first President. Since 1990, the association has organized the ATP Tour , the worldwide tennis tour for men and linked the title of the tour with the organization's name. It is the governing body of men's professional tennis. In 1990 the organization was called the ATP Tour, which was renamed in 2001 as just ATP and the tour being called ATP Tour. In 2009 the name of the tour was changed again and was known as the ATP World Tour, but changed again to the ATP Tour by 2019. [1] It is an evolution of the tour competitions previously known as Grand Prix tennis tournaments and World Championship Tennis (WCT).

The ATP's global headquarters are in London. ATP Americas is based in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida; ATP Europe is headquartered in Monaco; and ATP International, which covers Africa, Asia and Australasia, is based in Sydney, Australia.

Early history

Started in 1972 by Jack Kramer, Donald Dell, and Cliff Drysdale, it was first managed by Jack Kramer, as executive director, and Cliff Drysdale, as president. Jim McManus was a founding member. [2] Kramer created the professional players' rankings system, which started the following year and is still in use. From 1974 to 1989, the men's circuit was administered by a sub-committee called the Men's International Professional Tennis Council (MIPTC). It was made up of representatives of the International Tennis Federation (ITF), the ATP, and tournament directors from around the world. The ATP successfully requested that the MIPTC introduce a drug testing rule, making tennis the first professional sport to institute a drug-testing program.

1973 Wimbledon boycott

In May 1973 Nikola Pilić, Yugoslavia's number one tennis player, was suspended by his national lawn tennis association, who claimed he had refused to play in a Davis Cup tie for his country earlier that month. [3] The initial suspension of nine months, supported by the International Lawn Tennis Federation (ILTF), was later reduced by the ILTF to one month which meant that Pilic would not be allowed to play at Wimbledon. [4]

In response the ATP threatened a boycott, stating that if Pilić was not allowed to compete none should. After last-ditch attempts at a compromise failed the ATP voted in favor of a boycott and as a result 81 of the top players, including reigning champion Stan Smith and 13 of the 16 men's seeds, did not compete at the 1973 Wimbledon Championships. [5] [6] Three ATP players, Ilie Năstase, Roger Taylor and Ray Keldie defied the boycott and were fined by the ATP's disciplinary committee. [4]

1988 breakaway

But the tour was still run by the tournament directors and the ITF. The limited player representation and influence within the Men's International Professional Tennis Council (MIPTC) as well as dissatisfaction with the way the sport was managed and marketed culminated in a player mutiny in 1988 led by active tennis pros including then world Number 1 ranked Mats Wilander which changed the entire structure of the tour. [7]

ATP Tour

CEO Hamilton Jordan is credited with the "Parking Lot Press Conference" on 26 August 1988 during which the ATP announced their withdrawal from the MIPTC (then called the MTC) and the creation of their own tour from 1990 onwards. [2] [8] [9] [10] This re-organisation also ended a lawsuit with Volvo and Donald Dell. [11] On 19 January 1989 the ATP published the calendar for the inaugural 1990 season. [12]

By 1991, the men had their first television package to broadcast 19 tournaments. [2] Coming online with their first website in 1995, this was followed by a multi-year agreement with Mercedes-Benz. Lawsuits in 2008, around virtually the same issues, resulted in a restructured tour. [13]

2009 changes

In 2009, ATP introduced a new tour structure called ATP World Tour consisting of ATP World Tour Masters 1000, ATP World Tour 500, and ATP World Tour 250 tier tournaments. [14] [15] Broadly speaking, the Tennis Masters Series tournaments became the new Masters 1000 level and ATP International Series Gold and ATP International Series events became ATP 500 level and 250 level events respectively.

The Masters 1000 tournaments are Indian Wells, Miami, Monte Carlo, Madrid, Rome, Toronto/Montreal, Cincinnati, Shanghai and Paris. The end-of-year event, the ATP Finals, moved from Shanghai to London. Hamburg has been displaced by the new clay court event at Madrid, which is a new combined men's and women's tournament. In 2011, Rome and Cincinnati also became combined tournaments. Severe sanctions are placed on top players skipping the Masters 1000 series events, unless medical proof is presented.

Plans to eliminate Monte Carlo and Hamburg as Masters Series events led to controversy and protests from players as well as organisers. Hamburg and Monte Carlo filed lawsuits against the ATP, [16] and as a concession it was decided that Monte Carlo would remain a Masters 1000 level event, with more prize money and 1000 ranking points, but it would no longer be a compulsory tournament for top-ranked players. Monte Carlo later dropped its suit. Hamburg was "reserved" to become a 500 level event in the summer. [17] Hamburg did not accept this concession, but later lost its suit. [18]

The 500 level tournaments are Rotterdam, Dubai, Rio, Acapulco, Barcelona, Aegon Championships (Queens Club, London), Halle (Gerry Weber Open), Hamburg, Washington, Beijing, Tokyo, Basel and Vienna.

The ATP & ITF have declared that Davis Cup World Group and World Group Playoffs award a total of up to 500 points. Players accumulate points over the four rounds and the playoffs and these are counted as one of a player's four best results from the 500 level events. An additional 125 points are given to a player who wins all 8 live rubbers and wins the Davis Cup. [19]

ATP Tour tournaments

The ATP Tour comprises ATP Masters 1000, ATP 500, and ATP 250. The ATP also oversees the ATP Challenger Tour, a level below the ATP Tour, and the ATP Champions Tour for seniors. Grand Slam tournaments, a small portion of the Olympic tennis tournament, the Davis Cup, the Hopman Cup and the introductory level Futures tournaments do not fall under the auspices of the ATP, but are overseen by the ITF instead and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for the Olympics. In these events, however, ATP ranking points are awarded, with the exception of the Olympics and Hopman Cup. The four-week ITF Satellite tournaments were discontinued in 2007.

Players and doubles teams with the most ranking points (collected during the calendar year) play in the season-ending ATP Finals, which, from 2000 to 2008, was run jointly with the International Tennis Federation (ITF). The details of the professional tennis tour are:

EventNumberTotal prize money (USD)Winner's ranking pointsGoverning body
Grand Slam 4See individual articles2,000ITF
ATP Finals 14,450,0001,100–1,500ATP (2009–present)
ATP Tour Masters 1000 92,450,000 to 3,645,0001000ATP
ATP Tour 500 13755,000 to 2,100,000500ATP
ATP Tour 250 40416,000 to 1,024,000250ATP
ATP Challenger Tour 17835,000 to 168,00080 to 125ATP
ITF Men's Circuit 53415,000 and 25,00010 to 20ITF
Olympics 1See individual articles0IOC

ATP Rankings

ATP publishes weekly rankings of professional players: ATP Rankings (commonly known as the ‘world rankings’), a 52-week rolling ranking, and the ATP Race to London, a year to date ranking. [20] All ATP players also have a Universal Tennis Rating, based on head-to-head results.

The ATP Rankings is used for determining qualification for entry and seeding in all tournaments for both singles and doubles. Within the ATP Rankings period consisting of the past year, points are accumulated, with the exception of those for the ATP Finals, whose points are dropped following the last ATP event of the year. The player with the most points by the season's end is the world No. 1 of the year.

The ATP Rankings Race To London is a calendar-year indicator of what the Emirates ATP Rankings will be on the Monday after the end of the regular season. Players finishing in the top eight of the Emirates ATP Rankings following the Paris Masters will qualify for the ATP Finals.

At the start of the 2009 season, all accumulated ranking points were doubled to bring them in line with the new tournament ranking system.

Current rankings

Organizational structure

As of January 1, 2020, Andrea Gaudenzi is the Chairman of ATP [23] and Massimo Calvelli is the Chief Executive Officer. [24] Mark Young is the Vice Chairman, David Massey is the Executive Vice President for the European region and Alison Lee for the International group. [25]

The ATP Board of Directors includes the Chairman, along with three tournament representatives and three player representatives. The player representatives are elected by the ATP Player Council. [26] The current board members are:

The 12-member ATP Player Council delivers advisory decisions to the Board of Directors, which has the power to accept or reject the council's suggestions. As of October 12, 2020, the Council consists of four players who are ranked within the top 50 in singles (Kevin Anderson - President, Rafael Nadal, Felix Auger-Aliassime, John Millman), two players who are ranked between 51 and 100 in singles (Yen-Hsun Lu and Jeremy Chardy), two top 100 players in doubles (Jurgen Melzer and Bruno Soares), two at-large members (Andy Murray and Roger Federer), one alumni member (Colin Dowdeswell), and one coach, Brad Stine. [27] [28] [29]

The ATP Tournament Council consists of a total of 13 members, of which five are representatives from the European region, along with four representatives from both the Americas and the International Group of tournaments. [26]

See also

Related Research Articles

The ATP Tour is a worldwide top-tier tennis tour for men organized by the Association of Tennis Professionals. The second-tier tour is the ATP Challenger Tour and the third-tier is ITF Men's World Tennis Tour.

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The 2008 ATP Tour was the global elite men's professional tennis circuit organised by the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) for the 2008 tennis season. The ATP Tour is the elite tour for professional tennis organized by the Association of Tennis Professionals. The ATP Tour includes the four Grand Slam tournaments, the Tennis Masters Cup, the ATP Masters Series, the International Series Gold and the International Series tournaments.

ATP Rankings

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2009 ATP World Tour Mens tennis circuit

The Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) World Tour is the elite professional tennis circuit organised by the ATP. The 2009 ATP World Tour calendar comprises the Grand Slam tournaments, the ATP World Tour Masters 1000, the ATP World Tour 500 series, the ATP World Tour 250 series, the ATP World Team Championship, the Davis Cup, and the ATP World Tour Finals. Also included in the 2009 calendar is the Hopman Cup, which does not distribute ranking points, and is organised by the ITF.

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The ATP 500 tournaments are the fourth highest tier of annual men's tennis tournament after the four Grand Slam tournaments, ATP Finals, and the ATP Tour Masters 1000.The series includes 13 tournaments, with 500 ranking points awarded for the events' singles champions – which accounts for the name of the series. Tournaments have various draws of 32 and 48 for singles and 16 and 24 for doubles. It is mandatory for leading players to enter at least four 500 events, including at least one after the US Open; if they play fewer than four, or fail to play in one after the US Open they get a "zero" score towards their world ranking for each one short. Roger Federer holds the record for most singles titles at 24, while Daniel Nestor holds the record for most doubles titles won with 20.

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