Dominic Stricker, Alex Michelsen and Abdullah Shelbayh had a different experience this Sunday in the press conference room at the Next Gen ATP Finals presented by NEOM. Instead of sitting behind the microphone answering questions, players sat in media seats as they were briefed on the signature rules and innovations at the tournament, which will take place Nov. 28-Dec. 2 in the City. King Abdullah Sports Team of Jeddah.

Stricker is the only member of the field to have played the event before, but even he will have to adapt to the new conditions of the tournament that serves as a testing ground for potential rule changes and innovation on the ATP Tour.

“Not having a warm-up will be interesting. You usually have a few minutes to find your game, so this will be a little different,” Stricker said.

“I like the new timing rules with eight seconds between first and second serves and also 15 seconds between points when rallies are short. That’s a good rule because you can save a lot of time after those short stitches. “Some players may think they need more time, but I think it’s a very good idea.”

World No. 94 Alex Michelsen, who was around No. 600 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings last year and was celebrating Thanksgiving in California, said he is also comfortable with the shortened time between first and last. second services.

“I only bounce the ball three times, so eight seconds between the first serve and the second shouldn’t be a problem for me,” he said.

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Jordanian Abdullah Shelbayh, who received an invitation to participate in the tournament, said he hopes to adapt to the different set of rules.

“I think it will be more exciting and challenging as everyone gets used to the faster speed of the game,” Shelbayh said. “And with the short four-game sets, matches can be decided by just a few points, so I think that will be best for us.”

“The rule that I may find challenging is the free movement of fans, because I haven’t had that before. “We’re used to people walking the court in practice, but doing it in a game will be a new experience.”

Arthur Son

The changes for 2023 will accelerate the fast-paced format of the event, improve the fan experience and enrich data and analysis for players, coaches and fans:

  • Without warming up on the court: Matches will begin immediately after the coin toss, with a separate practice court available for warm-ups.
  • Shot clock reductions: A new maximum of eight seconds will be introduced between the first serve and the second. This also applies after a let on the first or second serve. As in previous editions, the time between points will be reduced from 25 to 15 seconds if the previous point includes fewer than three shots.
  • Wear tracking: Players will be able to track and view biometric data during matches via wearable devices, providing a complete overview of their physical performance and stress responses.
  • Insights: A new Physics Index, developed by Tennis Data Innovations and Kinexon, will capture physical effort through player and ball tracking technology. Existing TDI insights, such as shot quality, will be leveraged in the stadium for the first time.
  • Analysis during the match: The newly launched Tennis IQ platform will be available to coaches seated on the court along with tagged video footage with match data updated in real-time and displayed in the stadium.
  • Basecamp: A new pre-event off-court competition, Basecamp, will measure players’ skills and physique through a series of tests, creating new ways for fans to analyze the game’s rising stars.
  • The referee’s chair will be lowered to reduce visual obstruction to fans in the arena. Live electronic rulings remain in place to replace line judges.
  • There will be a simplified scoreboard to improve fan engagement and understanding.

Continuation of previous editions:

  • The scoring format It will be the best of five sets with tie-breaks. Each set will be won with four games or in a tie-break in case of 3-3. Games will be played using the 40/40 no-advantage scoring format and the service box will be chosen by the server.
  • Free movement is allowed of fans in the stadium, except behind the baselines.
  • Reduced changes: There are no changes of sides after the first game of a set. At the end of the set, players will sit for 90 seconds (instead of 120 seconds).

The Next Gen ATP Finals 2023 presented by NEOM will take place at King Abdullah Sports City from November 28 to December 2, 2023, with a record prize pool of $2 million on offer.


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