Children playing tennis

Mixed reactions for World Tennis Number, the new method for rating amateur tennis players

The governing body of world tennis, the ITF, have announced they are to launch the ‘World Tennis Number’ in an attempt to break down barriers in tennis


The World Tennis Number will use an algorithm to measure the performances of all tennis players globally and then give each player a number which will hopefully allow them to avoid uneven match ups when playing against each other.

Amateur and junior tennis has long struggled with the fact that there isn’t a globally recognised system for measuring the standard of players like there is in golf. Because of this it much difficulty for players, coaches, tournament organisers and tennis authorities as they have no true way of knowing the relative standards of different players.

ITF President, David Haggerty, said: “Our vision (with the World Tennis Number) is simple, to create local online communities of tennis players sharing meaningful and enjoyable tennis experiences through level-based play. With this new platform, we have the means to connect a worldwide community of 87 million tennis players and fans.”

Britain’s governing body of tennis, the Lawn Tennis Association, have already signed up to this new system and intend to discard their current rating system and adopt the world Tennis Number gradually over the coming months and years

Tennis commentators, fans and players alike have been quick to take to social media to give their own feedback on the proposed ew system.





Scott Lloyd, CEO of the LTA, has backed the new system and said, “We are delighted to be partnering with the ITF and leading tennis nations to create the new World Tennis Number.  The LTA is working hard to open tennis up to anyone who wants to play, and we believe that a new rating system will support our plans to offer players appropriate and enjoyable matches at every level of the sport.”

Even influential countries like the USA have come out to back the new system. USTA CEO Gordon Smith, said: “One of the USTA’s top priorities is to elevate all aspects of the tennis player’s experience, regardless of their age, background or skill level. As a nation with one of the largest tennis player communities on the planet, the USTA constantly strives to utilise best-in-class technology to improve products for the needs of players and fans. We believe the new World Tennis Number platform will foster relationships, increase opportunities to play and connect US players with the global community.”

This discussion is likely to roll on and on so keep coming back to tennishead for further updates. You can learn more about the World Tennis Number here

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Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.