There is nothing wrong with the fact that prize money is not raffled off – in the end, it should be the main event of amateur sports. For tennis players, another question is much more important: why are rating points not played at the Olympics? Even the chief tennis player of the planet Novak Djokovic asks this question: “To be honest, I don’t understand why we should not get points. The best players in the world will take part in the tournament, which can be called the fifth Grand Slam tournament.
At previous Games, winners received points (for example, in London Andy Murray got 750 points for gold, and Serena Williams – 685). This year, tennis players are invited to play only for prestige. The head of ITF, David Haggerty, said: “We believe that playing at the Olympics will be an honor for players, and rating points will not affect their decision to play.”
Of course, no one questions the prestige of the Olympics in other sports – in athletics, swimming, archery, wrestling and so on, this is really a great event, the culmination of four years of an athlete’s life. In tennis, the situation is slightly different, since competitions at the Olympics level are held four times a year. And on them, they can earn not only fame and honor.
So it would be logical to play at least points at the Olympics. Why is this not happening? There are two versions. First: players are not selected at all by rating (a maximum of four players from one country is possible – that is, the fifth Russian racket will not get to the Olympics, even if it is higher than the first racket in the women’s ranking, for example, Puerto Rico). Therefore, it was allegedly decided that points should not be given – this violates the principles of justice. Here, however, another question arises: is it true that, for example, Bernard Tomic was not allowed to defend points for winning his favorite tournament in Bogota? He was removed from the APR calendar allegedly for the Olympics.
The second version is more prosaic. Previously, the ITF compensated for the Asia-Pacific and WTA (which maintain ratings) monetary losses that they suffered from the cancellation of small tournaments taking place during the Olympics (which is held just by ITF). This time it was not possible to agree, therefore, the Asia-Pacific and WTA points for the Games do not give, and also hold tournaments in parallel with them, in which points and money are played. For example, in this way, a tournament in the Mexican Los Cabos appeared on the APR calendar.
Doesn’t fit in the calendar
Usually in the tennis calendar in early August a cozy bunch of major tournaments Toronto / Montreal + Cincinnati is held. This year, the Olympics wedged between them. As a result, this leads to the fact that from North America tennis players who want to play everywhere must briefly drop into the South (16-18 hours of flight in each direction). The Olympics was not such a calendar problem if all tournaments were interrupted for a month in honor of it (or if it had been held in February or immediately after Wimbledon when there was a lull in tennis). But in the tight tennis schedule of the end of summer, it creates serious difficulties for the players.