Coronavirus (Covid-19) FAQs for Competitions - Players



This page aims to answer some of the key questions for players around competitions in relation to the coronavirus (Covid-19).

Further information and advice around Covid-19 relating to tennis in Britain more broadly can be seen on the LTA’s dedicated page at


Players aged 18 years old competing in 18U events

I am 18 years old, why can’t I compete in a 18U indoor event where either the tournament or where I reside falls into a tier 2 (high) or tier 3 (very high) area?

On 12 October 2020, HM Government introduced local COVID alert levels which have been made legislation. This legislation defines and handles both juniors and adults differently in relation to organised sport. The Government define a junior as anyone 17 years or younger whilst an adult as someone 18 years or older. These definitions differ from the LTA Competition Regulations and clearly the legislation overrides this.

As an 18 year old you may continue to compete in 18U events where the event is:

  1. outdoors and you do not live in or the competition is not within a tier 3 (very high) area or if you live within a tier 3 (very high) area and are staying within your local authority.
  2. indoors and you live in or the competition is within a tier 1 (medium) area.

We understand this is frustrating and disappointing, andthe LTA is committed to providing opportunities for as many people as possible to take part in competitive tennis. However, cancelling these events outright would mean many more players would be prevented from playing.

You can find a list of which areas fall into which tiers on HM Government’s website. Find out what tier your local area is in using HM Government’s postcode checker.

What is the cut-off for reaching 18 years of age to compete in an 18U event?

The event end date will be the cut off for the definition i.e. a player may not reach 18 years of age during the event.

What if the area I live in or the venue moves into a higher tier during the tournament?

The COVID-19 pandemic is an ongoing and ever-changing situation and alert levels will change (quite often at very short notice). We would expect any player 18 or older to withdraw from the competition if the guidelines change mid competition and they are no longer able to compete. Tournament Organisers and Referees will continue to monitor the COVID alert level for their local authority and should the tournament venue move into a tier where they cannot host the tournament, they will contact participants within the relevant events.

Will these events still count for ranking purposes?

We recognise that 18U events should be open to players aged 18 & under as of the 31st December 2020, however in light of the legislation this is no longer possible. The LTA will continue to grade these events as previously advised and ranking points will still be earned.

The LTA Ranking system has been modified to ensure no player is negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The 52 week calculation has been removed and the start date for the rankings run until further notice is 16th March 2019.


Open Events

Will open events in tier 2 (high) and tier 3 (very high) areas taking place indoors be cancelled?

Tournament Organisers and Referees will be in touch with further information. It may be possible to host these events outdoors rather than indoors so please await confirmation.

Will open adult events in tier 3 (very high) areas taking place outdoors be cancelled?

It is likely that there will be changes to who can participate in these events or the events will be cancelled. In most cases they will be downgraded to Grade 5 events and only those from the local area will be able to compete in these events.

I live in a tier 3 (very high) area. Am I able to travel to a lower tier area to play in a competition?

The Government has advised that individuals should not travel into or out of areas that have a very high alert level, including for sport. This does not apply to travel where this is necessary to enable disability sport, sport for educational purposes or sport for players aged 17 and under.



How do I know what tier my local area is in?

You can find a list of which areas fall into which tiers on HM Government’s website. Find out what tier your local area is in using HM Government’s postcode checker.

Whose responsibility is it to check if I can compete?

It is the player / parent’s responsibility to check if they can compete as a referee can not check the individual situation of every player.  Each player / parent should consider:

  • Before leaving home to play tennis, all participants should undergo a self-assessment symptom check for any COVID-19 symptoms using the information on the NHS website
  • It is the responsibility of the player to check what they can and cannot do if you live, work or travel in each local COVID alert level.

I’ve had to withdraw, will I receive a refund?

As per the LTA Competition Regulations, you will not be charged an entry fee for an event if:

  • the organiser cancels the tournament
  • the organiser decides not to run an event
  • your application to an event was unsuccessful
  • you cancelled an application prior to the published withdrawal deadline (subject to an admin fee)
  • you were placed on a reserve list but were not called upon to play
  • you were placed on a reserve list and invited to take part with less than 24 hours’ notice and decided not to accept
  • the organiser is unable to accept your application for any other reason

Ultimately any withdrawal on such grounds would be at the discretion of the Tournament Organiser however the LTA have asked organisers to look favourably on refunding players who are no longer able to compete in the event due to the new restrictions.

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