The annual tennis calendar can get quite confusing so we’re going to break it down the ATP World Tour for you and explain the different levels and tournaments.. This will be followed up with a separate piece on the WTA Tour.
The ATP is the governing body of the men’s professional tennis circuits of which there are 3
- ATP World Tour
- ATP Challenger Tour
- ATP Champions Tour
The ATP World Tour started in 1972 by Jack Kramer, Donald Dell, and Cliff Drysdale. Jack 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. source – Wikipedia
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.
The Tour Breakdown is as follows:
Winners are awarded 2000 ATP points for a Grand Slam win. Matches are best of 5 sets for men and 3 for ladies
Eight men and ten women have won Career Grand Slams in singles play (rows one and two); among them two men and five women have at least two Career Grand Slams in singles (column three). Since the beginning of the open era, five men (Rod Laver, Andre Agassi, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic) and six women (Margaret Court, Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova, Steffi Graf, Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova) have achieved this.
Roger Federer holds the mens record with 20 Grand Slam singles titles has reached a record 30 Grand Slam finals, Nadal is a close 2nd with 16 titles. Serena Williams is closing on Margaret Court’s 24 titles with 23 Grand Slam win.
Australian Open: A hardcourt tournament played in Melbourne Australia in mid January. Prize money
French Open: Clay tournament played at Roland Garros, Paris in late May – early June
Wimbledon: The oldest and only major tennis tournament left that’s played on grass and considered the most prestigious tennis event in the world. It’s played in Wimbledon, London in late June – early July. Full list of Wimbledon winners in the Open era
US Open: Played in the hardcourts of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre, Flushing Meadows, New York in late August – early September.
Master 1000 Series
Winners are awarded 1000 ATP points for a title and matches are best of 3 sets.
In singles, Rafael Nadal holds the record for the most titles with 33 since the Masters series began in 1990. Novak Djokovic is the only player to have won all 9 Masters singles titles and became first player to complete Career Golden Masters. Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Andre Agassi, and Andy Murray have each won 7 different titles. The tournaments are as follows:
Indian Wells, USA, Hard, March 5th – 18th
Miami, USA, Hard, March 19th – April 1st
Monte Carlo, France, Clay, April 15th – 22nd
Madrid, Spain, Clay 7th May – 14th
Italian Open, Rome, Clay, May 14th – 20th
Canadian Open, Toronto/Montreal, Hardcourt, August 3rd – 12th
Cincinnati, USA, Hard, August 11th – 19th
Shanghai, China, Hard, October 7th – 14th
Paris, France, Indoor, 27th October – 4th November
ATP Finals. The end-of-year event, the ATP Finals are played in London. This is a round robin series where the winner is awarded 1,500 ATP points.
ATP 500 Tournaments
Best of 3 set matches where winners are awarded 500 ATP points.
Rotterdam, Dubai, Rio, Acapulco, Barcelona, Aegon Championships (Queens Club, London), Halle (Gerry Weber Open), Hamburg, Washington, Beijing, Tokyo, Basel and Vienna.
ATP 250 Tournaments
Are the fifth-highest tier of annual men’s tennis tournament after the four Grand Slam tournaments, ATP Finals, ATP World Tour Masters 1000, and ATP World Tour 500.
The series includes 40 tournaments, with 250 rankings points awarded to each singles champion. ATP 250 tournaments are a great stepping stone from the Challenger Tour to the ATP main or World Tour.
ATP Title Records
Jimmy Conners still holds the record with 109 career titles in a career spanning three decades. Roger Federer is second with 99 career titles and counting.
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