Major Changes in Professional Tennis Announced

The ITF announced a drastic reduction in the number of professional players and the creation of what will be called a "Transition Tour".

Over 14,000 players competed as professionals last year, which is too many, considering that he vast majority of them don't break even and simply can't make a living. This number will be reduced to 750, and therefore, a larger share of the money invested on the tour will be available to each individual player. A statistical data from 2013 shows that 60% of the money was earned by only 1% of the professional players.

The Transition Tour will replace the lower tier of pro tournaments -- $15,000 prize money -- and will no longer pay prize money. It will distribute ITF Entry Points, instead of ATP and WTA points. These ITF Entry Points will then be the players' passport to the ITF Pro Circuit and to the ATPWTA tours. It will be in the form of local circuits, to reduce traveling costs for the young aspiring pros. This will provide more clarity for players and coaches as to who has a true shot at making it in the tour and who should look for other career paths, play college tennis, etc.

Another major issue related to this decision from the ITF has to do with protecting the integrity of the sport, amid the suspicion that a great number of players are getting paid by bookmakers to lose matches, in an unlawful and unethical attempt to make up for the money they can't make on the tour.

You can read the full article on the ITF website, clicking here.