The Universal Tennis Ranking (UTR) is a hot topic right now.
Really it has been around for a bit.
It seems during the French Open each year the UTR folks appear on Tennis Channel to push their system.
I play tennis and I have a child who plays competitive tennis.
For me does UTR mean anything?
I play USTA league and all that matters is your USTA ranking.
I don’t want or need another ranking.
What about Juniors?
In the more competitive arena, whether junior or adult tennis, there will be:
Professionally there are a few more, but we’ll leave that for another time.
So, I don’t care about UTR for me, but what about my child?
I’m not a fan.
As a competitive junior player, you are always chasing ranking points.
State points / regional points / national points.
It is non-stop.
UTR gives us something else to worry about.
For typical tournament play, nobody worries about UTR. Sure, the kids talk about it, but it has no actual place in our daily lives.
BUT – what about college?
Now college coaches won’t look at a kid with a UTR below X.
Great, now we have to worry about UTR.
The UTR folks like to push UTR tournaments.
Why not send my kids to play in one of those?
Well, he’s already playing 2 tournaments a month.
Why would I send him to another that only counts for UTR points?
At least the other tournaments he is getting some combination of state/region/national points.
The UTR folks also like to say their rating system is blind to sex and age…so a 9 UTR can play a 9 UTR and expect similar skills.
Let’s see, the #5 man has a UTR of 15.85. The #1 woman has a UTR of 13.35.
If men and women, or elderly and younger, do not regularly play again each other, there is no way for the UTR to normalize among the groups.
That aside, I’m just tire of yet another ranking system that feels like it is only there for someone to make money from it.