ITF Press Release, November 17, 2021
The International Tennis Federation (ITF) today published the ITF World Tennis Tour calendar for the first quarter (Q1) 2022 and is set to provide over 1000 events over the course of next year. The first quarter calendar in 2022 will offer 204 tournaments, 102 events for the men’s and the women’s tour; a 50% increase against Q1 2021 and a 7% increase on Q1 2019 – despite restrictions affecting many ITF-hosting countries.
Jackie Nesbitt, Senior Executive Director, Tours and Player Pathway said, “The ITF World Tennis Tour typically provides over 1000 tournaments globally each year, and we are on track to deliver over and above this volume in 2022. The response and commitment of our national associations and tournament organisers speak to the robustness of the World Tennis Tour with tournaments set to take place in 80 countries, providing more than 65,000 playing opportunities, and over 80,000 matches for fans to enjoy over the course of next year’s tennis season.”
In 2021, 763 ITF World Tennis Tour tournaments will have been held despite the continued challenges due to COVID-19. The ability to host tournaments has been significantly affected by the global health situation, economic impact, international travel constraints, and the need to ensure a safe environment for all involved with strict health, safety, and integrity measures in place at all events. Although disruptions continue due to the pandemic, the number of tournaments taking place at the end of this year are at 90% capacity compared to the same period in 2019, as the World Tennis Tour begins to return to pre-COVID levels.
ITF president and IOC member, Dave Haggerty commented, “Nations are excited about the return to tennis and in a number of cases planning more activity than prior to the pandemic. While we must remain cautious, we can begin to plan further ahead. National Associations worked hard in 2021 to deliver strong calendars for both junior and emerging professional players, despite huge challenges.”
“The World Tennis Tour and Juniors form the main artery of the talent pathway and future of our sport. We always strive to continually improve the system, for example, we are working with nations to increase the number of $60,000-$100,000 tournaments for women both in Q1 and across the year. World Tennis Tour plays a vital role for talented athletes who have the ambition, ability and determination to make it to the top of the game, no matter which country they are from.”
The ITF World Tennis Tour offered $24.3million in prize money in 2019. The number of $25,000 tournaments alone have increased from 52 in 2019 to 72 in 2021 (44 for women and 28 for men).