All You Need to Know About the New Rules and Format of the Next Gen ATP Finals 2021

Published 11/08/2021, 12:46 PM EST

The Next Gen ATP Finals is a year-end tennis tournament especially played amongst male players aged 21 or under. The mega event takes place in Milan, Italy. The competition was first inaugurated in the year 2017, and since then it has received strong responses from the audience. It’s a place for the upcoming stars of the ATP tour to show their skills.


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Surprisingly, in November 2021, the rules and format of the competition received some updates. Let’s take a look at what these are.


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New developments in the Next Gen ATP Finals

The annual year-end tennis tournament has observed some new innovations in the format and the rules. Several new rules will be implemented in this year’s Next Gen ATP Finals. The innovations which were pioneered in previous editions, to be continued this year are:

  • First-to-4, Best-of-5 Set Matches
  • No-Ad Scoring
  • Free Fan Movement
  • Live Electronic Line Calling
  • Shot Clock
  • Video Review
  • Towel Racks

Apart from these, there are some fresh rules which are included this year. There will be shorter warmups now, from four minutes to 1 minute. The aim being to have less rest-time and more action. Courtside coaching has been inculcated this time from the sidelines. There will be net cameras to offer a front-seat experience for fans.

Moreover, the medical time-outs have been decreased. Each player can use only one medical time-out per match. Subsequently, three-plus additional two minutes (in cases of attire change) will be allowed for bathroom breaks.

The new rules clearly seem to be focused towards making the game a more fast-paced experience, perhaps targeting a younger viewership. Whether these modifications are for the best of the sport or not is obviously a matter for discussion.

Players’ comments on the new rules

Following this development in rules, many players shared their opinions on the subject. The 21-year-old American tennis player, Sebastian Korda, believes it will be very intriguing.

He said,It is going to be interesting because it is going to come down to a lot of tight situations. I am excited to see how everything is going to go and see if we use these rules in the future.”

Mar 30, 2021; Miami, Florida, USA; Sebastian Korda of the United States celebrates after his match against Diego Schwartzman of Argentina (not pictured) in the fourth round in the Miami Open at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The Spanish teenager, Carlos Alcaraz also conveyed his viewpoint on the same. The young star has performed extraordinarily this year. With already reaching the quarter-finals of US Open 2021, Alcaraz has surely made a strong statement.


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The Spaniard said, “In our sport, there is a lot of coaching. It is really good to talk with your coach when you are playing. I think it is a good idea, at least to try it at this tournament and I think it is a good idea to use in the future. I really like having the coach on court.”

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 03: Carlos Alcaraz of Spain celebrates after defeating Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece during his Men’s Singles third round match on Day Five at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 03, 2021 in New York City. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

With the new rules to be implemented, the mindset of players would definitely change, and will try to concentrate more during the game. What do you make of these rule changes?


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Atri Bhatt

376 articles

Atri Bhatt is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. He is pursuing his Master's degree in Sports Management from Deakin University, Australia. In addition to critically analysing the game, he also plays tennis professionally.