By Jürgen Fritz, Tue 11 Mai 2021, Cover picture: © JFB
The ATP Ranking, which is decisive for the seedings in professional tennis tournaments, has been modified several times since the pandemic break, much to the disadvantage of the young players. Now, results count not only for up to 12 months, but for up to 36 months. It also contains some other fundamental deficiencies and distortions. In order to have an overview of what actually happened in the last 52 weeks, without tendency skews, the JFB Ranking was developed.
This is how the JFB ranking works
The JFB 52 Week Tennis World Ranking works quite simply, is very easy to understand, coherent and comprehensible.
- The 18 best results of the last 52 weeks are taken into account, regardless of the tournament. There are no requirements, as in the ATP ranking, that, for example, the Grand Slam and ATP Masters 1000 tournaments are counted even if the player is eliminated in the first round or does not even compete. No player gets privileges to add a 19th tournament, as is the case in the ATP Ranking with the eight players who qualify for the ATP Finals, so that they can move even further away from the others. Each player’s 18 best results from the last 52 weeks count, regardless of which tournament they were achieved at. No special rules for anyone.
- No tournament is counted twice if it is played two times within 52 weeks. Only the last result counts then.
- The period may be extended minimally if a tournament is played one or two weeks later than in the previous year due to postponements. However, the period will not be extended to 60, 80 or even over 100 weeks, or even to 156, as the ATP does for some tournaments (so the ATP Masters 1000 Indian Wells 2019, the ATP Masters 1000 Miami 2019, the ATP Masters 1000 Monte Carlo 2019, the ATP Masters 1000 Madrid 2019, Halle 2019, Wimbledon 2019, Washington 2019, the ATP Masters 1000 Canada 2019 …)
- There are no points just for showing up, as the ATP does for Grand Slam and Masters 1000 tournaments (10 points). Only those who win a match receive points. Those who lose their very first match, whether in round one or two, receive zero points.
The points are also awarded differently than in the ATP ranking. The four Grand Slam tournaments (A) together are certainly not less important than the nine Masters 1000 events (C), but on the contrary somewhat more valuable. Therefore, the A tournaments are weighted 25 per cent higher than in the ATP ranking. Four victories at the Grand Slam tournaments therefore bring 400 points, whereas nine victories at the ATP Masters 1000, now ATP Masters 40, bring 360 points. Likewise, the ATP Finals (B), which are held only once a year and form the crowning finale of the ATP season, are weighted somewhat higher. A victory here counts for about two thirds as much as a Grand Slam triumph (62 to 70 per cent, depending on whether you remain undefeated). In addition, players‘ results in the important Olympic Games (B, not organised by the ATP) and the most traditional team competition (T), the Davis Cup (not organised by the ATP, but by the ITF), which has been held since 1900, are evaluated and taken into account.
The tournament winners receive the following points
Tournament winners receive the following point totals for winning a tournament:
- Grand Slam tournaments (A): 100 points
- Olympic Games (B): 75 points
- ATP Finals (B): 70 points. If the winner of the ATP Finals has won only two of his three group matches, then 62 points.
- Davis Cup (team competition): up to a maximum of 45 points
- ATP Masters 1000 (C): 40 points
- ATP Cup (team competition): up to a maximum of 30 points
- ATP 500 (D): 20 points
- Laver Cup (team competition): 2 points for a win on the first, 4 on the second and 6 on the third day, up to a maximum of 10 points
- ATP 250 (E): 10 points
- ATP Challenger Tour tournaments are ranked accordingly. So the winners of the highest Challenger events get 5 points, those of the lowest 2 points.
- Winners in ITF Future Tour tournaments receive 1,5 (M25 category) and 1 points respectively (M15 category).
And this is how points are awarded for the finalists, semi-finalists, quarter-finalists etc.
The greatest thing in tennis is a final in a Grand Slam tournament (A). This is a 40-point match in the JFB Ranking. The final in the Olympic Games (B) is a 30 point and the final in the ATP Finals (B) is a 28 point match. The semi-final of a Grand Slam is a 25 point match, the final in an ATP 1000 event (C) is a 16 point match, and so on.
If numbers are in brackets, this means: Only if the player did not reach this round with a free round, he will get these points.
The maximum possible score is 1000 points, in years without Olympic Games 945
The maximum possible score for the 18 best results in the past 52 weeks is 1000 points in years with Olympic Games, 945 points in all other years:
- 4 x 100 (Grand Slams) = 400
- + 75 (Olympic Games)
- + 70 (ATP Finals)
- + 45 (all Davis Cup victories)
- + 9 x 40 (ATP 1000) = 360
- + 30 (all ATP Cup victories)
- + 20 (ATP 500)
In years without the Olympics, the 18th result can be topped up by a D tournament (20 instead of 75 points). In non-Olympic years, a player can therefore score a maximum of 945 points.
In the ATP ranking a maximum of 21,000 points is possible. The highest score ever was achieved on 6 June 2016. At that time, Novak Djokovic reached 16,950 points in the ATP Ranking. In the JFB ranking, including the points for Djokovic’s victories in the Davis Cup, that was just over 770 points. That was 81 ot 82 per cent of the maximum possible score of 945 (there were no Olympic Games in the 52 weeks before).
Normally about 400 to 550 points in 52 weeks are enough to be No. 1 in the world. And 160 to 180 points usually puts you in the top eight that qualify for the ATP Finals at the end of the season.
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