“Reduces the Value”: ATP Chairman Faces Backlash After Proposing Major Changes for Tennis Events




The ATP has proposed some changes as a part of its new strategic plan for future tennis tournaments. The ATP, under chairman Andrea Gaudenzi, has demanded an accumulation of media and data rights of all its 64 tournaments. The tennis body also put forward a proposal in front of different sports’ governing bodies. In that, the tour urged them to get together for better and efficient administration.

However, tournament directors and chairmen of different tournaments believe that the new proposals would affect some tournaments, especially the ATP 250s, drastically. They are of the opinion that the new proposals are still not clear to them.

“The process and the timeline, we think is too rushed. We want to have a constructive dialogue on the details of the plan. But we are all just laser-focused on stabilizing the business and seeing how we’re going to stage these events in 2021,” said Stacey Allaster, the USTA’s chief executive of professional tennis.

The managing bodies surely want a discussion before adopting any protocols of the ATP. They want assurance that their interests would be protected if they agree to align with other bodies.

ATP’s new plan for 2022 tennis season

Australian Open
A general view inside Rod Laver Arena at sunset during the Men’s Singles Final match betwen Novak Djokovic of Serbia and Rafael Nadal of Spain during day 14 of the 2019 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 27, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

As a part of its 2022 action plan, the ATP has proposed to increase the number of days of some of its top tournaments like the Masters 1000 tournaments. This would directly affect the 250 tournaments as six of the tour’s 38 tournaments. They would automatically shift into the second week of the Masters 1000 events.

The organizers fear that this would actually withdraw all the attention from the smaller tournaments like the 250s. The top players will require some rest and thus chances of their arrival will be less. Without their presence, sponsors and advertisers won’t like to associate them with the tournament as well.

“We do not support 250s being in the second week of the Western & Southern Open,” remarked Allaster. Eddie Gonzalez, the tournament director of the Truist Atlanta Open also supported her and claimed, “It really reduces the value of a 250.

Allaster has even called for a vote on the proposals at the tour board’s next meeting during the ATP Finals in London. If she manages to convince others, maybe the ATP has to put the proposals for reconsideration.

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