Beach tennis is one of the most popular racket sports gaining popularity every year and one of the indicators is the number of beach tennis tournaments that are currently played across the world. If you are looking for more information on everything around these beach tennis competitions, we have an exhaustive guide on it.
Every year, more than 300 beach tennis tournaments are organised by the International Tennis Federation with the sport being played in nearly 40 countries all over the world. This number was less than 90 as recently as in 2015, which shows the increase in the popularity of the sport around the globe.
Two of the biggest beach tennis tournaments include the ITF Beach Tennis World Team Championship and the ITF Beach Tennis World Championships. Together with some of the regional Championships in the three continents it is played, they form some of the biggest competitions in the beach tennis world.
Beach Tennis Tournament Format
Most of these tournaments are played on outdoor sand as you would expect but there are indoor sand beach tennis competitions as well. In a lot of these tournaments, players are drawn into groups or pools and each player has multiple shots at making it to the knockout stage of the competition.
So players or teams could be divided into groups of four apiece and each player gets a chance to play three matches each before one or two are able to advance to the next round. Number of players, available courts and time dictate the nature of the beach tennis competitions and their format.
When are the Beach Tennis Tournaments Played?
The Beach Tennis tournaments are played all year long. Basically if there’s a beach, then there’s a tournament played, irrespective of the time of the year. The season starts early in January and goes all the way through to December last week, with the Beach Tennis World Championships played in June.
Tournament Ranking Points and Grade
Each of the ITF-sanctioned Beach Tennis tournament is played for points and money much like the tennis tournaments on the ATP and WTA circuit. Different tournaments are afforded different number of points depending on the type of the tournament.
For instance, World Championships are A grade beach tennis tournaments and the winner gets 250 points in it, the most for any tournament. Regional Championships, B1 and B2 award 150 and 80 points respectively to the winners while Grade events, 1, 2, 3 and 4 have 150, 100, 60 and 40 points respectively for the players winning those competitions.
Best Beach Tennis Tournament List
The World Championships of Beach Tennis is one of the most important competition on this sport’s calendar, and it’s played in Italy. The original venue was Cervia but this has shifted to Terracina recently and the 2020 edition will be played there too. It’s usually played in a knockout format, with 32 teams participating in the singles draw.
Apart from the Beach Tennis World Championships, there are a handful of C1 level tournaments, which offer some of the top prize money to players. In July, the St. Petersburg Beach Tennis Cup is the first C1 Beach Tennis tournament, followed by the Guayaquil Open in Ecuador in September.
The Aruba Open Beach Tennis Championships is probably one of the most famous beach tennis tournaments in the world, and had a prize money of $50,000 – the most for any beach tennis competition. It is hosted in Aruba in November. And the season ends with the C1 competition in South Africa at the Kia Summer Slam in Plettenburg Bay, South Africa.
The season begins in January every year much like its conventional tennis counterpart. The 2019 had started off with a three-day competition at Monopoli in Italy on January 4 with a prize money of $10,000 and was followed by one in Thailand a week later.
The first C2 grade tournament was the Etapa Sao Paulo ITF de Beach Tennis in Brazil towards the end of January, which was followed by the Open International des Brisants in France in mid-March.
In the month of May, there were back to back C2 grade tournaments, the Copacabana in Rio de Janeiro and ITF Beach Tennis Gran Canaria in Spain. After the middle of the year sees the aforementioned World Championships and C1 level competitions, the 10eme Open International de Beach Tennis is played in France in August, and as is 3. ITF Beach Tennis Open Saarlouis towards the end.
There is Italy’s Internationali di Beach Tennis Citta’ Di Terracina in the last week of August before the season rounds off at the Mormaii Garopaba Open de Beach Tennis in Brazil in mid-December.
In 2020, new C1 level tournaments have been added to the list with one at Santos called the BT400 Santos in February, and another at Saint Gilles Les Bains by the same name in March.
This is apart from the other, smaller, C3, C4 and C5 level tournaments which are played all through a month every year.
It would be difficult to list all the beach tennis tournaments on this page, but here are some of the important ones. Other than the ones mentioned below, if you want the entire list of these tournaments, the official ITF website updates these beach tennis competitions every month here.
Aruba Open Beach Tennis Championships
As mentioned earlier, this is the biggest beach tennis tournament that’s played in the month of November and in 2019 it went on for a whopping 10 days. 32 teams participate in this tournament in both, the men’s and the women’s draw and the last three days of the tournament last season were live streamed online as well.
The 2019 edition of the Aruba Open was played at a recently-constructed beach tennis arena which was called Bushiri. The Bushiri hotel, which existed till about 2010 was demolished recently and a beach area made, where this tournament was played moving away from Eagle Beach.
There are a total of eight tournaments played at the Aruba Open Beach Tennis Championships, which includes Singles, Mixed Doubles, Team Cup and Nations Cup, Men’s and Women’s Doubles, Masters Doubles, Juniors Tournament, ITF Qualifying Draw Consolation and ITF Main Draw Consolation.
Beach Tennis Rules
Some of the beach tennis rules are same as the normal tennis rules. Winners are decided using best-of-three sets with each of the set needing a player or team to win six games with a difference of two games. Tie-breakers need players to win seven points with a difference of two points.
To understand the in-depth nature of the rules and regulations for this sport, you can read our exhaustive beach tennis rules guide here.