This comprehensive guide to the World Padel Tour explains everything you need to know about the competition. Join us to learn what it is, how it works, and how you can watch it! 

What is the World Padel Tour?

The World Padel Tour is a professional padel competition that the International Padel Federation organizes. The WPT is a circuit of international tournaments for both women and men.

It gathers the world’s best padel players and has its headquarters in Spain, where 12 of the 16 events in the calendar of 2021 will take place.

What sport is WPT

What sport is World Padel Tour?

The sport played on WPT is padel, which is sometimes called padel tennis. Padel is a racquet sport. The sport differs from paddle tennis, which is common in the United States and Canada. On an enclosed court about 25% smaller than a tennis court, you play padel in doubles.

Check out our padel guide if you want to learn more about the sport.

History

World Padel Tour (WPT) started in 2012 after two years of intensive work. Padel Pro Tour (PPT), the first international competition for professional Padel tournaments, was to be replaced by a new circuit. 

Over the past ten years, padel has exploded in Spain, and each event has drawn at least 20 thousand fans in stadiums with a capacity of over 5 thousand spectators. 

This number is ever-increasing, as the Estrella Damm Master Finals 2017, with 25 thousand spectators during the five-day competition, was the biggest tournament in the sport’s history. 

In terms of popularity, padel finished third in Spain’s top sports list, after football and basketball, and before the more traditional sports of handball and futsal. 

International Padel Federation

Founded in 1991, the International Padel Federation (FIP) is the world governing body for the sport. It is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting all forms of Padel around the world.

The World Padel Tour (WPT) is the official international professional circuit recognized by FIP. It gives the WPT federated standing for its tournaments and the organization is responsible for the global ranking list.

World Padel Tour Circuit

The WPT circuit

As the international popularity of padel grows, so does the professional padel circuit worldwide. The best players are now traveling the world to compete in the padel world tour.

The padel WPT has been played in Spain, Argentina, Mexico, and Brazil. However, as we can see from the World Padel Tour schedule 2021, an increasing number of countries other than Spain and South America will be participating.

On the circuit, recent tournaments have was held in Sweden, the UK, France, Belgium, and Dubai. In 2017, the professional tour visited Miami, Florida, for its first time in the USA.

The 2021 World Padel Tour calendar includes 26 official competitions in six countries, making it the most extensive season in the professional circuit’s history.

WPT Tournaments

Tournaments

Between 18 and 26 WPT tournaments are held annually, plus a final where the top-ranked pairs compete. The participating players travel to different cities around the world to collect points and qualify for the final tournament, where the top eight ranked pairs compete after the season has concluded.

The padel WPT features both men and women. However, the number of women’s WPT championships has traditionally been about half that of men’s, debated.

Six types of tournaments

World Padel Tour 2021 is hosting six levels of tournaments. From the FIP tournaments, each successive level has higher ranking points and prize money. 

The first tiers have a lower entry-level, which is a good way for lower-ranked players to earn points.

  • Exhibition
  • Tournaments FIP
  • Challenger
  • Open
  • Master
  • Master Final

Exhibition tournaments

As part of the branding and reaching out to the world, the WPT organizes exhibition tournaments.

Knokke, a municipality in the Flanders region in Belgium, hosted the first exhibition of the 2021 season in august. It was possible to see some of the top padel players in the world, including Paquito Navarro, Martín Di Nenno, Fede Chingotto, Juan Tello, Las Martas, Paula Josemaría and Ari Sánchez.

They also arranged matches between the WPT players and other Belgians, tests, and shows.

Tournaments FIP

The International Padel Federation and the World Padel Tour have taken an important step toward globalizing the competitive structures of padel.

They added FIP GOLD and agreed to loosen ranking restrictions, allowing more players to participate in the competition to offer a more ambitious competition offering that will enable players to earn more points and increase their revenues.

Challenger

They have decided to change the Challenger tournaments to improve the competition. As a result, for the first time in WPT history, the six events of the 2021 calendar will be played in both categories: men and women. 

As a result of the redesigned Challengers, young players will earn more points, increase income, and gain visibility.

Open

With 14 tournaments scheduled for 2021, the World Padel Tour Open is the most common type. Ten Open tournaments are held in Spain, while the other four take place in Sweden, Mexico, and Italy.

Master

In 2021, there will be five WPT Masters tournaments. There are three in the Spanish cities of Marbella, Barcelona, and Valladolid. The other two WPT Masters take place in Cascais and Buenos Aires.

Master Final

WPT Master Final is the last event of the season, and it is a special event. Its format and the fact that it brings together the best 16 male and 12 female players of the season make it unique.

Following the draw of pairings, two groups, A and B, will be formed by four male and three female pairings. Everyone will face everyone in groups. 

The men’s and women’s top two pairings from each group will take each other on in the semifinals after three rounds. First from Group A vs. Second from Group B and First from Group B vs. Second from Group A.

Four days of world-class padel and 24 matches later, we’ll find out who are the year-end masters.

World Padel Tour

World Padel Tour ranking

The WPT ranking consists of the top world padel tour players. Since the pairings change during a season, doubles partners on the World Padel Tour ranking list don’t usually have the same points.

Players earn ranking points through their performance at tournaments on the WPT. Rankings are updated each week.

WPT best players

The rankings on the padel tour change every week, but here are some of the World Padel Tour best padel players at the moment:

Best padel players men:

  1. Juan Lebrón
  2. Ale Galán
  3. Francisco (Paquito) Navarro
  4. Martín Di Nenno
  5. Augustín Tapia
  6. Sanyo Gutiérrez
  7. Fernando Belasteguín
  8. Federico Chingotto
  9. Juan Tello
  10. Pablo Lima

Best padel players women:

  1. Gemma Triay
  2. Alejandra Salazar
  3. Ariana Sanchez
  4. Paula Josemaría
  5. Lucía Sainz
  6. Patricia Llaguno
  7. Delfina Brea
  8. Tamara Icardo
  9. Viriginia Riera
  10. Beatríz González

If you want to see the current ranking world padel tour, visit WPT’s website.

How much does a padel player earn?

Are you curious about the World Padel Tour Prize Money 2021?  One of the most frequently asked questions among padel fans is how much money a professional player can earn competing on the professional circuit.

In terms of prizes, the financial retributions differ depending on the type of competition included in the official calendar, i.e., Master, Open, and Challenger.

A player can earn anything from 131€ in a round of 16 Challenger to 10.584€ for winning a Master.

However, you should note that the above figures only take into account the prizes derived from participation in the circuit, without considering what the players get from the sponsors and the expenses involved in having a team of professionals around (coaches, psychologists, nutritionists, etc.).

International wildcards

To compete in a professional and high-level Padel tournament, players must meet specific requirements. To be eligible for a spot in an official event, you must appear in the rankings. There is also an alternative for those who do not meet the qualifying requirements. Padel players may qualify for WPT padel events through a system called “Wildcard.”

A variety of padel tournaments take place outside of the World Padel Tour competitions throughout the year. Wildcards get awarded at certain WPT events from these tournaments. Additionally, independent padel federations grant Wildcards to their best players.

As a result, players from other parts of the world seeking their first official points and participating in the top padel circuit now have more options.

How to watch World Padel Tour

How to watch World Padel Tour

There is a growing interest in padel tennis, and the World Padel Tour YouTube channel has over half a million subscribers.

You can watch World Padel Tour in various ways depending on where you live. In some countries, it is possible to watch World Padel Tour 2021 on TV. Sky (Italy), NENT (Nordic countries), Telenet (Belgium), and TNT (Argentina) will broadcast the Tour.

If you want to watch World Padel Tour online, it is possible to do so by live-streaming it for free on YouTube. However, due to licensing, it is not available in all countries. In that case, you can use a VPN service to access it.


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