Australia, 22 December 2020 | Leigh Rogers

The UTR Pro Tennis Series, which began in late June, provided an opportunity for Australian players to compete in 2020.

The series was played across five Australian cities – Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Perth. As well as offering $976,000 in prize money, it provided valuable match play amid the global COVID-19 pandemic. In total, there were 1,096 matches played across 73 events.

Rinky Hijikata, a 19-year-old from Sydney who had planned to spend 2020 playing college tennis in America, was a standout performer in the men’s competitions.

> Getting to know Rinky Hijikata

There were 15 men who won Pool A titles throughout the series. Hijikata, who was named Male Junior Athlete of the Year at the 2019 Australian Tennis Awards, led the title count with five.

Player Titles won
Rinky Hijikata 5
Alexander Crnokrak 2
Thanasi Kokkinakis 2
Jason Kubler 2
Max Purcell 2
Tristan Schoolkate 2
Dane Sweeny 2
Li Tu 2
Aleksandar Vukic 2
Harry Bourchier 1
Blake Ellis 1
Kody Pearson 1
Marc Polmans 1
Akira Santillan 1
John-Patrick Smith 1

Hijikata won 33 of the 41 Pool A matches he contested in the series and enjoyed a 20-match winning streak between August and December.

Dane Sweeny, a 19-year-old from Queensland, recorded the second most victories with 25.

Player Wins Losses
Rinky Hijikata 33 8
Dane Sweeny 25 20
Kody Pearson 20 9
Alexander Crnokrak 19 14
Benard Nkomba 18 23
Maverick Banes 18 26
John-Patrick Smith 15 5
Moerani Bouzige 14 18
Tom Fancutt 13 14
Calum Puttergill 13 22

Two men – Thanasi Kokkinakis and Marc Polmans – went undefeated.

Kokkinakis won the two Melbourne events he contested, winning all eight matches he played in November.

Polmans claimed the inaugural Melbourne title in late June, winning four matches before travelling overseas to compete on the resumed ATP Tour.

Player Winning percentage
Thanasi Kokkinakis 100%
Marc Polmans 100%
Jason Kubler 91%
Aleksandar Vukic 90%
Bernard Tomic 87%
Li Tu 85%

Li Tu, a 24-year-old from Adelaide who runs his own coaching business, proved one of the biggest surprises of the series.

Tu won 28 of the 30 matches he played across the series, claiming four Pool B and two Pool A titles. After beginning the series with a Universal Tennis Rating of 12.74, Tu’s rating has improved to 13.38.

> Learn more about Universal Tennis Ratings

Player Titles won
Li Tu 4
Scott Jones 2
Nikita Volonski 2
Nathan Boniel 1
Moerani Bouzige 1
Blake Ellis 1
Chase Ferguson 1
Corey Gaal 1
Jeremy Jin 1
Arjun Mehrotra 1
John Peers 1
Scott Puodziunas 1
Calum Puttergill 1
Philip Sekulic 1
Edward Winter 1

Edward Winter, a 16-year-old from South Australia, won the most Pool B matches in total.

Tu was unbeaten in the 16 Pool B matches he contested, while Western Australia’s Scott Jones won 11 of his 12 matches.

Player Wins Losses
Edward Winter 18 10
Li Tu 16 0
Scott Puodziunas 14 7
Chen Dong 13 12
Scott Jones 11 1

A total of 105 men contested the UTR Pro Tennis Series, sharing a prize money pool of $558,400. There were 18 men who collected more than $10,000 each.

Hijikata won the most prize money of all competitors with $30,100.

Player Total prize money
Rinky Hijikata $30,100
Dane Sweeny $24,150
Maverick Banes $22,950
Benard Nkomba $21,800
Calum Puttergill $19,950
Alexander Crnokrak $18,400
Kody Pearson $18,350
Moerani Bouzige $18,100
Li Tu $17,825
Jake Delaney $14,875

> Everyone has a Universal Tennis Rating. Visit to claim yours!