Monday August 31st, 2015

Youth or experience—which is better served (and returned) on tour? The men continue to age gracefully. The average age of the top 200 players on the ATP World Tour is 27 years 4 months, the top 20 average is 28 years 5 months.  Below is a comparison of the ages by ranking:

It’s amazing to see how many of the top players are close to or over 30 years of age and how few teenagers are in the world’s top 200.  Things have sure changed from the days of teenage champions like Mats Wilander, Boris Becker, Michael Chang and Pete Sampras.  In today’s game it takes a long time for players to rise to the top.

On the WTA Tour there is a slightly better mix of young and old. While the seemingly ageless Serena Williams approaches her 34th birthday a couple of weeks after the U.S. Open, the average age to the top players remains a couple years younger than the men.

There is only one teenager in the WTA top 20 and only three in the top 100, but a total of 20 in the top 200, indicating that the youth movement has resumed a bit. But, like the men, experience reigns as the majority of top WTA players are more than 25 years old. 

Check's 2015 U.S. Open data hub page throughout the whole tournament for the latest data-driven infographics and charts from IBM, the official technology partner for the U.S. Open. IBM captures and analyzes the data that powers all of the Grand Slams, as well as the digital platforms that extend the experience to fans around the world.

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