ATP Chairman De Villiers calls RR format "very confusing" !!!
MELBOURNE, Australia -- The hybrid 32-draw round-robin format first used as an experiment at the Adelaide International could be scrapped next year after ATP Chairman Etienne de Villiers admitted it was "confusing."
ATP is experimenting with three styles of round-robin formats at some tournaments this year -- 48- and 24-man draws and the hybrid format used at Adelaide which involves 32 players, eight who attempt to qualify for the 24-man round-robin portion of the tournament which features eight three-man groups.
However, weather problems at Adelaide delayed some matches, and some of the elimination and qualifying matches were played after the first round of the round-robin.
"I will be very, very surprised if that 32 hybrid survives," de Villiers said Sunday. "It was very creative, but it was very confusing as well."
"Qualifiers, eliminations, and then wait to see who gets into the first round, then you get delays, and you get some guys playing the first round before the qualifiers are finished."
De Villiers said round-robin formats are desirable in some cases, particularly in guaranteeing that certain players will compete in local markets on specific days and times for television.
And in the case of Adelaide, the first tournament of the year, a big-name player rusty from the holidays would have a second chance if he gets beaten in his first match.
De Villiers said he got some good feedback.
"Adelaide came back with a whole bunch of interesting ideas," de Villiers said. "Every experiment you do, you are always surprised by what you learn."