Last week, the ITF Board approved a further packet of measures for stakeholders impacted by the coronavirus pandemic and the ongoing suspension of sport through a relief fund worth more than £2 million.
Despite the significant challenges that have resulted from this pandemic, the ITF has been resolute in our desire to help as many of our stakeholders as possible. We do not have unlimited resources, so we have focused our efforts where they are most needed. David Haggerty, ITF President
This includes £1.1 million in funding for National Associations to help facilitate the return to tennis through national and junior tournament grants, in addition to the £10.8 million in development funding already issued to National Associations in 2020.
A portion of the fund is set to enable eligible junior players to participate in regional events.
An additional £276,000 is also being made available to support players ranked 501 to 700 in singles or 176 to 300 in doubles in both the ATP and WTA rankings.
This funding will be distributed in the form of development grants to eligible players via their National Associations and is in addition to contribution the ITF previously made to the joint player relief programme for players inside the top 500.
The four Grand Slam tournaments and the ITF pledged more than £240,000 in financial support for wheelchair tennis last week, while a tournament support fund has been created to facilitate the return of beach tennis.
“Despite the significant challenges that have resulted from this pandemic, the ITF has been resolute in our desire to help as many of our stakeholders as possible,” said ITF President David Haggerty.
“We do not have unlimited resources, so we have focused our efforts where they are most needed.
“This has been a complex process, but I am pleased that we have been able to reach this point and I would like to thank the ITF Board of Directors for their support.
“There remains much uncertainty, but I am confident that as we continue to pull together and make the right decisions, tennis will make a strong recovery.”
Since professional tennis was suspended on 12 March, the ITF has seen more than 1,100 of its events cancelled or postponed.
A range of measures were implemented to protect the long-term viability of tennis, including savings on projects, a job retention scheme, salary reductions, and the utilisation of reserves.