The principal bodies for male tennis players and female tennis players are different. The ATP and the WTA have now existed separately for close to 50 years, but now as we move forward many have called for a merger of the two bodies. Roger Federer started the conversation and has gotten the seal of approval from various players like Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams, etc.
Roger Federer sprang this ATP-WTA union conversation during the pandemic break back in April. The 20-time Grand Slam champ tweeted calling for the unity of men’s and women’s tennis.
Roger Federer tweets on the unification of ATP and WTA
“Just wondering…..am I the only one thinking that now is the time for men’s and women’s tennis to be united and come together as one?”
In a recent interview with the Tennis Majors, the WTA CEO Steve Simon appreciated the above tweet from Roger Federer. He also called for the continued push towards the union.
“But I think the more that we do it and the more we keep pushing that direction, it clearly is the right thing to do.” (Federer’s tweet) created conversation. I think that’s the best way that you can describe it and where it went.”
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Steve Simon also said that from the women’s side everybody would be happy with a merger. The Williams sisters and the WTA Players Council also share a similar approach to the ATP-WTA union.
“If you talked to Serena (Williams) or Venus (Williams) or any of them, you would hear some similar comments and our Player Council would love to see us working together, too,” Simon said.
Simon reckons ATP and WTA can work together strongly. But he is also aware of various hurdles that challenge the prospect of a merger.
“So I think it’s something that I certainly believe in, us working strongly together. There’s obviously challenges and a lot of business issues that make it challenging at times to get it across.”
There are a lot of logistical and business challenges to the merger. But the merger would also be a united platform for the players, tournaments, and fans. It is a long shot and it will take a few years for the conversation to turn into a proper idea.