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Here are a few Fast Facts, some Strategies, and Statistical Information to help you play the ATP fantasy tennis game. I post my picks at Tennis Diary the day before each week’s tournaments start, either Saturday or Sunday.
- Each team consists of eight players and one doubles team. Each player or doubles team can be chosen no more than five times in a season. If you chose eight different players in singles every week, you’d use 200 players in a season. The minimum number of players you could use in singles in one season is 40.
- Each week’s team has to be chosen before the first match of the next tournament. The deadlines can be found on the Tournaments Page. You can also see a calendar of deadlines below. The complete rules are here.
- Draws for tournaments are posted 24-36 hours before the tournament starts and can be found on the ATP home page. Be sure to check the draws each week to make sure two of your players don’t meet in an early round and knock each other out of the tournament.
- Teams are ranked based on the total prize money your players earn.
- The season starts on June 25th with Wimbledon. The season ends on October 29th with the Paris Masters tournament.
- Season length: 16 weeks (you’ll pick 16 teams).
- Total number of tournaments: 30.
- Number of slams: 2 (Wimbledon and US Open).
- Number of Masters Series tournaments: 4 (Montreal, Cincinnati, Madrid, Paris).
- Number of tournaments on clay: 8, hard court: 10, indoor hard court: 5, indoor carpet: 5, grass: 2.
Look for the Prize Money
Look at the list of tournaments ranked by prize money below. Remember, your team’s standing is determined by your team’s total prize money.
Since the slams have the highest prize money followed by the Masters Series events and then the lower level tournament, save your top players for the slams and the Masters Series events. You should use Roger Federer in the two slams and three of the four Masters events since you can only use him five times.
Keep in mind that most players who’ve qualified for the year end Tennis Masters Cup – the top 8 players at the end of the year qualify – usually skip the Paris Masters event because they don’t want to risk injury.
Plan Your Entire Season
Plan your picks at the beginning of the season. For instance, the clay court season is very long. There are 8 clay court events so you don’t want to run out of clay court players. Some players perform best on indoor hard court and carpet and you need to save them for the fall indoor season.
If you want to know who performs well on what surface, check out these resources:
- Tennisinsight.com has a list of the top twenty players on each surface. This site uses a sophisticated model that is constantly updated to determine a player’s rating on each surface.
- Tennis.matchstat.com has a list of the ten players with the best record on each surface.
- To check out an individual player’s record on a surface, go to tennis.matchstat.com and enter a player’s name. At the top of his results will be a table showing his performance on different surfaces for the past five years. Look at Juan Monaco for instance. He’s mediocre at best on hard courts but very good on clay. Keep players like him around for the clay court season.
Tournament surfaces are listed in the prize money list below.
Pick the Draws
If you’re a fanatic, pick the draws:
- Get the draws for each week’s tournaments on the ATP home page and print them out.
- Get the head to head records for each match in the draw and pick the winners in each round of the tournament.
- Choose the top players in each tournament for your team.
- Wimbledon (grass), U.S. Open (outdoor hard): $1.4 million
- Madrid Masters(indoor hard), Paris Masters (indoor carpet): $468, 860
- Montreal Masters (outdoor hard), Cincinnati Masters (outdoor hard): $400, 000
- Stuttgart (clay), Vienna (indoor hard): $183, 752
- Basel (indoor carpet): $166, 514
- Kitzbuhel (clay): $152, 380
- Tokyo (outdoor hard): $145, 000
- Moscow (indoor carpet), St. Petersburg (indoor carpet): $142, 000
- Stockholm (indoor hard), Lyon (indoor carpet): $132, 384
- New Haven (outdoor hard) : $84, 000
- Sopot (clay): $81, 637
- Gstaad (clay): $80, 943
- Bastad (clay), Amersfoort (clay), Umag (clay), Bucharest (clay), Metz (indoor hard): $76, 970
- Bangkok (indoor hard): $76, 500
- Washington (outdoor hard): $74, 250
- Indianapolis (outdoor hard), Los Angeles (outdoor hard): $73, 000
- Beijing (outdoor hard): $69, 200
- Newport (grass): $66, 850
- Mumbai (outdoor hard): $65, 850
Choose your team every week before the deadlines listed below. ET (US) refers to Eastern Standard Time in the U.S. CET refers to Central European Time. These deadlines change throughout the season so always check the ATP Fantasy Tennis site each week.
2007-06-25 Last Substitution: 09:00 ET (US) 15:00 CET
2007-07-09 Last Substitution: 04:00 ET (US) 10:00 CET
2007-07-16 Last Substitution: 04:00 ET (US) 10:00 CET
2007-07-22 Last Substitution: 04:00 ET (US) 10:00 CET
2007-07-30 Last Substitution: 04:00 ET (US) 10:00 CET
2007-08-05 Last Substitution: 10:00 ET (US) 16:00 CET
2007-08-13 Last Substitution: 10:00 ET (US) 16:00 CET
2007-08-19 Last Substitution: 10:00 ET (US) 16:00 CET
2007-08-27 Last Substitution: 10:00 ET (US) 16:00 CET
2007-09-09 Last Substitution: 21:00 ET (US) 2007-09-10 03:00 CET
2007-09-23 Last Substitution: 22:00 ET (US) 2007-09-24 04:00 CET
2007-09-30 Last Substitution: 20:00 ET (US) 2007-10-01 02:00 CET
2007-10-07 Last Substitution: 02:00 ET (US) 08:00 CET
2007-10-15 Last Substitution: 04:00 ET (US) 10:00 CET
2007-10-22 Last Substitution: 02:00 ET (US) 08:00 CET
2007-10-29 Last Substitution: 04:00 ET (US) 10:00 CET
Court speed is an important variable in tennis matches. Faster courts favor harder hitters. Slower courts favor clay court specialists.
A player may be the number four seed at the U.S. Open but they’re unlikely to reach the semifinals if they’re a clay court specialist. Wimbledon is different. The top 32 seeds reflect the rankings but the order of the seeds is adjusted to favor players who excel of fast courts. For that reason, the top seeds at Wimbledon are more likely to reach the later rounds.
Tennis Form has a table containing the court speed for all tournaments. Click on any column heading to sort the table by the entries in that column. For instance, if you click on the heading of the last column, the table will sort itself by court speed. You’ll notice that some hard courts play slower than some clay courts.
Note that this data is not the measured court speed but how fast the court is playing. The number of games played per set is a useful way of gaging court speed because the faster the court, the easier it is to hold serve and the more games will be played.
Useful Websites for Player Records and Statistics