Understanding Women’s Tennis Rankings #1

Creative Commons Licensephoto credit:Mercurier

Pictured above is Amelie Mauresmo’s beautiful one handed backhand drive. Mauresmo is in the very early stage of her forward swing before impact with the ball.

The French woman was the 15th of only 19 woman to hold the world No.1 ranking since the WTA ranking system began on 3 November, 1975.

The Sony Ericsson WTA Tour bases the women’s tennis rankings on total points won over a rolling 12 month system. The rolling system is the amount of ranking points a player accumulates for the previous 52 weeks.

Currently the rankings represent the points tallied from 11 August, 2008 through to 10 August, 2009. A player must earn ranking points in a minimum of 3 Women’s Tour events before they are included in the WTA Tour ranking list.

The ranking points won in WTA Tour  and ITF tournaments of $100,000, $75,000 and $50,000 US dollars are added each Monday to create a new weekly ranking list.

The above mentioned events are added provided the events are completed by 11:59pm US Eastern time on the day before (i.e. Sunday).

ITF Women’s Circuit events that range in total prize money of $10,000 through to $25,000 US dollars are added 1 week later (or longer) after the event has concluded. However, any points added remain for 52 weeks from that date they are included.

In each of the above mentioned tournaments the number of  ranking points a player wins depends on how many rounds the woman progresses through and what category that particular tournament has been graded.

The higher the tournament is graded (categorised), the more ranking points are awarded in each round of that event. The further a player wins through a tournament, the greater number of ranking points she receives for each victory.

The Grand Slam graded tournaments offer the most ranking points as the highest category event on tour. The winner of the final of a Grand Slam is awarded 2,000 WTA ranking points.

The 2nd highest number of ranking points can be earned at the Sony Ericsson Championships. An undefeated champion in the year end event achieves the maximum of 1,500 points.

The 3rd highest amount of ranking points that can be won is from Premier Mandatory tournaments. The winner of one of these events has 1,000 points added to their personal total.

The 4th highest amount of ranking points that can be won is from Premier Five tournaments. A Premier Five champion earns 800 points.

A player’s ranking only includes the points she wins from a maximum of 16 tournaments within the previous 52 week period.

Due to the max of 16 rule players can have a number of weak performances in tournaments discarded and NOT have a negative impact on their ranking.

Further explanation of the WTA rankings including, the rules for the breakdown of which 16 tournaments must be included in each player’s rankings points total, will be covered in part 2 of this series.

Today’s POST is dedicated to Kerry Reid. Reid was born on 7 August in 1947 and won the Australian Open in 1977. The Australian was runner-up in 2 other Grand Slam singles finals: to Margaret Court (1970 Australian Open) and to Billie Jean King (1972 US Open). Reid’s highest ranking of No.5 was first achieved in 1971.

© OnCourtAdvantage.com 2009

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