The ATP Rankings, as defined by the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP), are the "objective merit-based method used for determining qualification for entry and seeding in all tournaments for both (male) singles and doubles, except as modified for the ATP World Tour Finals (singles or doubles)."[2] The rankings period is "the immediate past 52 weeks, except for: Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, singles and doubles, which is dropped on the Monday following the last ATP World Tour event of the following year; Futures Series tournaments that are only entered into the system on the second Monday following the tournament's week. Once entered, all tournaments, except the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, remain in the system for 52 consecutive weeks."[2]

History

The ATP began as the men's trade union in 1972 and rose to prominence when 81 of its members boycotted the 1973 Wimbledon Championships.[3] Just two months later, in August, the ATP introduced its ranking system intended to objectify tournament entry criteria, which up to that point was controlled by national federations and tournament directors.[4]

The ATP's new ranking system was adopted by men's tennis.[5] While virtually all ATP members were in favour of objectifying event participation, the system's quite first No. 1, Ilie Năstase, lamented that "everyone had a number hanging over them," fostering a more competitive and less collegial atmosphere amongst the players.[6]

The original ATP ranking criteria, which persisted through the 1980s, was based on averaging each player's results, though the details were revised a number of times.[4][5] Starting in 1990, in conjunction with the expansion of ATP purview as the new men's tour operator, the ranking criteria was replaced with a 'best of' system modelled after competitive downhill skiing.[5] This 'best of' system originally used 14 events but expanded to 18 in 2000.[5]

Overview

A player's ATP Ranking is based on the total points he accrued in the following 19 tournaments (18 if he didn't qualify for the ATP World Tour Finals):

The requirement to play in four ATP World Tour 500 events doesn't apply to a player who was outside the top 30 in the previous year-end ranking; however, no more than four of his results from 500 level events might be counted.[2] For a better result within the same tour type to be transposed one has to wait for the expiry of the first worse result from previous year. It only expires at the drop date of that tournament and only if the player reached a worse result or hasn't entered the current year.

The Monte-Carlo Masters 1000 became optional in 2009, but if a player chooses to participate in it, its result are counted and his fourth-best result in an ATP 500 event is ignored (his three best ATP 500 results remain). If a player doesn't play enough ATP 500 events and doesn't have an ATP 250 or Challenger appearance with a better result, the Davis Cup is counted in the 500's table.[8] The World Team Cup was additionally included before its cancellation in 2012.

For the Davis Cup points, point are only distributed for the World Group countries and instead of having an exact drop date they're gradually updated at each phase of the cup (compared to the results of the player from previous year and arranged his total sum of Davis Cup points to it. E.g. if a player played two matches in a semifinal but plays one the next year only that one missing match will be extracted from his points).[8]

A player who's out of competition for 30 or more days, due to a verified injury, won't receive any penalty. The ATP World Tour Finals will count as an additional nineteenth tournament in the ranking of its eight qualifiers at season's end.[9]

For every Grand Slam tournament or mandatory ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament for which a player isn't in the main draw, and wasn't (and, in the case of a Grand Slam tournament, wouldn't have been, had he and all additional players entered) a main draw direct acceptance on the original acceptance list, and never became a main draw direct acceptance, the number of his results from all additional eligible tournaments in the ranking period that count for his ranking is increased by one.[2]

Once a player is accepted in the main draw of a Grand Slam tournament or ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament, his result in this tournament counts for his ranking, regardless of whether he participates. A player's withdrawal from an ATP World Tour 500 event, regardless of whether the withdrawal was on time, results in a zero point included as one of his best of four results. Further non-consecutive withdrawals results in a zero point allocation replacing the next best positive result for each additional withdrawal.[2]

Players with multiple consecutive withdrawals who're out of competition for 30 days or longer because of injury aren't subject to a ranking penalty as long as verified and approved medical forms are provided; or, a player won't have the ranking penalty imposed if he completes the Promotional Activities requirement as specified under "Repeal of Withdrawal Fines and/or Penalties" or if the on-site withdrawal procedures apply. Players might additionally appeal withdrawal penalties to a Tribunal who'll determine whether the penalties are affirmed or set aside.[2]

Ranking method

Since the introduction of the ATP rankings the method used to calculate a player's ranking points has changed several times.[10][11]

Current points distribution (2009 – present)

Points are awarded as follows:

Tournament categoryWFSFQFR16R32R64R128Q
Grand Slam2000120072036018090451025
ATP World Tour Finals+500+400(200 for each round robin match win)
Masters 10001000600360180904510 (25)(10)25 (16)
Summer Olympics750450340 (bronze)
270 (4th)
13570355
500 Series5003001809045(20)20 (10)
250 Series250150904520(5)12 (5)
ATP Challenger Tour Finals+50+30(15 for each round robin match win)
Challenger 125,000 +H125754525105
Challenger 125,00011065402095
Challenger 100,00010060351885
Challenger 75,0009055331785
Challenger 50,0008048291573
Challenger 35,000 +H8048291563
Futures 15,000 +H35201041
Futures 15,0002715831
Futures 10,000 +H2715831
Futures 10,0001810621
  • (ATP 1000 series) Qualifying points changes to 16 points only if the main draw is larger than 56
  • (ATP 500 series) Qualifying points changes to 10 points only if the main draw is larger than 32
  • (ATP 250 series) Qualifying points changes to 5 points only if the main draw is larger than 32

In addition qualifiers and main draw entry players will then additionally receive the points in brackets for the rounds they reached.[12]

Davis Cup
Rubber categoryMatch winMatch lossTeam bonusPerformance bonusTotal achievable
SinglesPlay-offs5 / 10115
First round4010280
Quarterfinals65130
Semifinals70140
Final757531254150 / 2253 / 2754
Cumulative total500500 to 535362546254
DoublesPlay-offs1010
First round5010250
Quarterfinals8080
Semifinals9090
Final9535595 / 1305
Cumulative total31535053505

ATP Points were distributed from 2009 to 2015[13]

Glossary

Only World Group and World Group Play-Off matches and only live matches earn points. Dead rubbers earn no points. If a player doesn't compete in the singles of one or more rounds he'll receive points from the previous round when playing singles at the next tie. This last rule additionally applies for playing in doubles matches.[13]

1 A player who wins a singles rubber in the first day of the tie is awarded 5 points, whereas a singles rubber win in tie's last day grants 10 points for a total of 15 available points.[13]

2 For the first round only, any player who competes in a live rubber, without a win, receives 10 ranking points for participation.[13]

3 Team bonus awarded to a singles player who wins 7 live matches in a calendar year and his team wins the competition.[13]

4 Performance bonus awarded to a singles player who wins 8 live matches in a calendar year. In this case, no Team bonus is awarded.[13]

5 Team bonus awarded to an unchanged doubles team who wins 4 matches in a calendar year and his team wins the competition.[13]

Previous points distribution (until 2008)

Points are awarded as follows:

Tournament categoryTotal financial
commitment
WFSF
(3rd/4th)
QFR16R32R64R128Additional
qualifying points
Grand Slam$6,784,000 to $9,943,00010007004502501507535515
Tennis Masters Cup$4,450,000750^
550m
500^
300m
300^
100m
(100 for each round robin match win,
+200 for a semifinal win, +250 for the final win)
ATP Masters Series$2,450,000 to $3,450,00050035022512575355 (20)(5)15*
Olympics400280205/15510050255
International Series Gold$1,000,00030021013575250 (15)(0)10*
International Series Gold$800,00025017511060250 (15)(0)10*
International Series$1,000,00025017511060250 (15)(0)10*
International Series$800,00022515510055200 (10)(0)10*
International Series$600,000200140905015 (20)0 (10)(0)5
International Series$400,00017512075401505
Challenger$150,000+H1007045231003
Challenger$150,00090634021903
Challenger$125,00080563619803
Challenger$100,00070493116703
Challenger$75,00060422714603
Challenger$50,000 or $35,000+H55382413502
Futures$15,000+H24168410
Futures$15,00018126310
Futures$10,0001284210

Glossary

(€): All prize money and fees for ATP Masters Series, International Series, and Challengers played in Europe must be paid in euros (€). In most cases they're calculated at the 0.85 USD/EUR exchange rate, but it varies and is most often rounded throughout the 2008 ATP Official Rulebook.

(^): Tennis Masters Cup: maximum number of points that can be assigned to the player at this round (after he qualified to the semifinal with 3 round-robin wins)

(m): Tennis Masters Cup: minimum number of points that can be assigned to the player at this round (after he qualified to the semifinal with 1 round-robin win)

+H: Any Challenger or Futures providing hospitality shall receive the points of the next higher prize money level in that category. Monies shown for Challengers and Futures are on-site prize amounts.

Points are assigned to the losers of the round indicated. Any player who reaches the second round by drawing a bye and then loses shall be considered to have lost in the first round and shall receive first round loser's points (5 for Grand Slams and all AMS events). Wild cards at Grand Slams and AMS events receive points only from the second round. No points are awarded for a first round loss at International Series Events, Challenger Series, or Futures Series events.

Players qualifying for the Main Draw through the qualifying competition shall receive qualifying points in addition to any points earned, as per the following table, with the exception of Futures.

(*): 5 points only if the Main Draw is larger than 32 (International Series) or 64 (ATP Masters Series)

In addition to the points allocated above, points are allocated to losers at Grand Slam, Tennis Masters Series, and International Series Gold Tournaments qualifying events in the following manner:

  • Grand Slams: 8 points for a last round loser, 4 points for a second round loser
  • Tennis Masters Series: 8 points for a last round loser(**), 0 points for a first round loser
  • International Series Gold: 5 points for a last round loser(**), 0 points for a first round loser,

(**): 3 points only if the Main Draw is larger than 32 (International Series Gold) or 64 (ATP Masters Series).

Sources

  • ATP Rankings 5. Point Table (Page 153)

Current rankings

Number one ranked players

The following is a list of players who have achieved the number one position in singles after the inception of the rankings in 1973 (active players in green):

#PlayerDate reachedTotal weeks
1Romania Ilie NăstaseAugust 23, 197340
2Australia John NewcombeJune 3, 19748
3United States Jimmy ConnorsJuly 29, 1974268
4Sweden Björn BorgAugust 23, 1977109
5United States John McEnroeMarch 3, 1980170
6Czechoslovakia Ivan LendlFebruary 28, 1983270
7Sweden Mats WilanderSeptember 12, 198820
8Sweden Stefan EdbergAugust 13, 199072
9Germany Boris BeckerJanuary 28, 199112
10United States Jim CourierFebruary 10, 199258
11United States Pete SamprasApril 12, 1993286
12United States Andre AgassiApril 10, 1995101
13Austria Thomas MusterFebruary 12, 19966
14Chile Marcelo RíosMarch 30, 19986
15Spain Carlos MoyáMarch 15, 19992
16Russia Yevgeny KafelnikovMay 3, 19996
17Australia Patrick RafterJuly 26, 19991
18Russia Marat SafinNovember 20, 20009
19Brazil Gustavo KuertenDecember 4, 200043
20Australia Lleyton HewittNovember 19, 200180
21Spain Juan Carlos FerreroSeptember 8, 20038
22United States Andy RoddickNovember 3, 200313
23Switzerland Roger FedererFebruary 2, 2004302
24Spain Rafael NadalAugust 18, 2008141
25Serbia Novak DjokovicJuly 4, 2011205

Last update: June 27, 2016

Year-end number one players

Singles

Doubles

Players with highest career rank 2–5

The following is a list of players who were ranked world no. 5 or higher but not no. 1 in the period after the 1973 introduction of the ATP computer rankings (active players in green):