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There are many tournaments where seeded players (or at least some of them) receive a bye into the second round. This means that the first match this player plays is in the second round - against a player who got there after winning their first round match. For example, in the ATP tournament which is currently played in Barcelona, all seeded players received a bye into the second round.

If the player with the bye loses their first match, do they still get ranking points for the second round? In the other words, does the player with a bye who loses their second round match get the same number of points as the player who did not have a bye, won in the first round and loses in the second round?

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The 2015 ATP rulebook says in section 7.18 Byes - Assignment and Placement that:

Any player who received a “bye” and loses in the second round shall receive second round loser’s prize money but only first round loser’s points for the Emirates ATP Rankings, if applicable.

For example, Tsonga received bye in Barcelona this year. He lost in the second round to Granollers. As we can see in his ranking breakdown (Internet Archive), he has 0 points for this tournament. (Players, who advanced to the second round without a bye, got 20 points.)

Ranking breakdown

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Ranking points are based on where you get to in each tournament rather than for actually winning games, or even the standard of opponent you play. As a result the player receiving the bye will get the points for reaching the second round, even if they lose. While, on the face of it, this may seem unfair, it is one of the benefits they receive by being successful enough to be seeded in the first place.

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