We’ve updated our “Tennis Entries for Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Announced” post with the schedule and updated federation rankings, and wanted to provide further context to those who may not be familiar with how the Olympic Games are comprised for tennis.
Several athletes have withdrawn from the Olympic Games; however, all nineteen former collegiate athletes competing in Tokyo are still in the lineup. Seventeen institutions are represented in Tokyo with the Bruins of UCLA coming out on top with four former collegiate tennis players in the lineups.
How the Lineup Was Decided
The Tokyo Olympics tennis qualification is overseen by the International Tennis Federation. Each country can send a team comprising a maximum of six men and six women. Each team can include up to eight singles players (four of each gender) plus four doubles teams (two of each gender).
Entry is decided by players’ positions in the world rankings on June 7 following the French Open. All players have to be “in good standing” with their national federation and must have played in a specified number of Davis Cup or Fed Cup ties during the period since the last Olympics. However, some discretion is allowed taking into account factors such as injury or a particular country’s strength in depth.
Men’s & Women’s Singles
Fifty-six men and 56 women received direct acceptance into the singles events according to the world rankings as they were presented on June 7. However, this did not necessarily mean that players would have to be ranked in the world’s top 56. Players ranked in the top 56 but who had four or more other players from their country ranked higher than them would in principle not be selected.
Both the men’s and women’s fields also include eight “ITF places”. Some of these go to winners of regional events, such as the African Games or Asian Games. One place is available in each singles event for a former Olympic tennis gold medalist or Grand Slam champion who does not otherwise qualify but is still ranked in the world’s top 300. This provided a route into the event for Andy Murray, who won gold in 2012 and 2016.
Men’s & Women’s Doubles
Each field consists of 32 teams, comprising 31 direct acceptances, according to the world rankings, and one place for the host nation.
The field consists of 16 teams, comprising 15 direct acceptances, according to the world rankings, and one place for the host nation. Mixed doubles teams are selected from players who have already been accepted for the singles and/or doubles events.
The entry list and draw for the mixed doubles event will both be published on Tuesday, July 27.
Olympic Games Schedule: Tennis
The Tokyo Olympics tennis event starts on Saturday, July 24, and ends on Sunday, August 1. Finals and bronze medal matches will be played from Friday, July 30 to Sunday, August 1. You can follow along with the schedule and results here.
Matches will be played at Ariake Tennis Park, an existing facility that has been upgraded for the Olympics. The total capacity for the venue is 19,900 although fans will not be permitted to this year’s event. The main court is the Ariake Coliseum, which seats 10,000 and has a retractable roof. A new second court has been built specifically for the Olympic Games.