ATP considering no ranking points in response to Wimbledon ban on Russian & Belarusian players: Reports
The ATP Tour is said to also be in discussions with the WTA in order to formulate a joint response to the unilateral decision by Wimbledon
The ATP Tour is considering not allocating any ranking points for the 2022 Wimbledon Championships in response to the Lawn Tennis Association and All England Club‘s decision to ban Russian and Belarusian players from any tournaments in the United Kingdom.
According to The Telegraph, ATP Tour officials and Player Council representatives have been huddling up in meetings in Madrid last week and in Rome this week to discuss how best to manage the current situation. It has been reported that several of the top male players are in favour of not allocating any ranking points if some of their peers are not allowed to participate.
The ATP is also said to be in discussions with the WTA Tour in order to have a joint response to the ban, which could impact Top 10 players Daniil Medvedev, Aryna Sabalenka and Andrey Rublev besides several others.
Last month, Wimbledon announced that it would not permit players from Russia and Belarus to participate in any of the tournaments in the United Kingdom based on directional guidance given by the UK government to sporting events.
While Wimbledon is run by the All England Club, the men’s and women’s tours are not able to exert any influence on their decisions. However, the ranking points allotted and used for the world rankings are owned by the Tours and under their control.
“Stripping Wimbledon of points does not help the sport at all” – Todd Woodbridge
Todd Woodbridge, one-half of the legendary Aussie doubles duo The Woodies alongside Mark Woodforde, believes that withholding ranking points does not serve the sport and that players would still be willing to play at Wimbledon due to its prestige. Wimbledon is the oldest tournament on the tennis calendar and is considered the most prestigious of the four Grand Slams in tennis.
“I’m surprised the tour would look to take points away, because as a player, the tournaments that you long to play well in, and to win, are the grand slams,” Woodbridge told Wide World of Sports in an interview. “Taking points away won’t make any difference to the players wanting to play there, because of the prestige and the history of those events.”
“The players have to look back over the last two years and recognise that it’s Wimbledon and the other grand slam events that have been able to sustain the sport. Nobody can win by having to make such a difficult decision, but ultimately, stripping Wimbledon of points does not help the sport at all.”
“It would surprise me, given the amount of prizemoney that’s on offer, if many players would choose not to play at Wimbledon. Taking points away is not boycotting the tournament, any player that has grown up wanting to be a champion in our sport would be hard pressed to pass up the opportunity of playing at Wimbledon or any other grand slam tournament.”