Press releases

Madrid launches an innovative doubles event

The test is a commitment to improve the modality for fans, players and tournaments

April 03, 2024

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By Press Releases

The ATP has announced that it will test a new doubles format during the 2024 ATP Tour season, with the intention of making the sport a more attractive product for fans, players and tournaments. The launch will be this month at the ATP Masters 1000 in Madrid.

The objective of the event is to increase the exposure and attractiveness of the doubles discipline, creating new narratives and stories for fans, improving the on-site experience for fans at tournaments and offering an even better product to television networks.

Ross Hutchins, general director of the ATP, points out that “as a circuit we believe that there is potential to explore in doubles. We know it can add enormous entertainment value, but it requires a new storyline to connect with fans. Testing new formats and rules allows us to be agile and explore ways to improve the product. “It has been a highly collaborative initiative and we would like to thank Madrid for hosting the first test this season.”

The changes that will be tested at the Mutua Madrid Open 2024 are:

  • More matches between singles and doubles. The 32-team draw will have 16 spots reserved for teams to enter through their singles ranking, creating an unprecedented number of matches between the best doubles and singles players in the world, creating new narratives for the players. fans.
  • Compressed programming in five days (Tuesday to Saturday). It will be played during the second week of the tournament, which will offer a simpler and clearer schedule for fans and players.
  • Serving time is reduced to speed up the pace of play and reduce non-play time during matches. The time between points will be reduced to 15 seconds, after points less than four strokes (with four or more it will be 25 seconds).
  • Freedom of movement for fans in the stands during the game, which will add convenience to the on-site experience.

Matthew Ebden, World No. 2 in doubles and chair of the ATP Player Advisory Council, said: “Doubles has a lot to offer fans and the atmosphere it can create when presented in the right way is phenomenal. That being said, we as players recognize that more needs to be done to be our best. I would like to highlight my ATP colleagues for facing this challenge and adding new concepts. “A lot of time, thought and care has gone into this process and it has been a privilege to be a part.”

The test is the result of review and consultation with fans, television broadcasters and different tennis stakeholders. The process has been led by a dedicated doubles working group, established in 2023, with representatives from players, tournaments and ATP staff.

The format changes will be tested in a number of selected tournaments this season on the 2024 ATP Tour and further details will be announced in due course.


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