The United Cup capitalizes on the growing popularity of team tennis tournaments
International Tennis has another tournament richer team. From the 2023 season, the United Nations Cup will be held in Australia, a men’s and women’s tournament in which eighteen countries participate.
The United Cup is an initiative of the ATP, WTA and Tennis Australia and appears to be responding to the growing popularity of team events in world tennis.
The Davis Cup (men’s) and Billie Jean King’s Cup (women’s, former FA Cup) have been played for many years, but the Laver Cup (Europe vs the rest of the world) is now also a fixture on the tennis calendar.
In addition, the Pan American Cup will be held for the first time on November 11, 12 and 13 in San Antonio (Texas). This is a three-day meeting, Laver Cup style, between the best American tennis players from the East and West Coast.
The United Cup replaces the ATP Cup in the tennis calendar, the men’s country championship that has been organized in Australia for the past three years. An important aspect for participants: Players can earn points for the world ranking in this tournament.
The United Cup shows similarities with the Hopman Cup. The men’s and women’s tournament was held in Perth between 1989 and 2019, but did not count toward the world rankings. Switzerland was the last winner with Roger Federer and Belinda Bencic.
That latest edition also made for a great mixed doubles encounter between the United States with Serena Williams and Switzerland with Federer.
The Netherlands reached the final in this tournament in 2006. At that time, the Orange lost the US final with Peter Wessels and Michaela Krajesek.
The United Nations Cup begins with six groups from three countries. The three playing locations, Brisbane, Perth and Sydney, each have two groups. Next, the group winners will play a final match against each other at each location.
The remaining three nations and the best losing nation in the three final matches then advance to the semi-finals, which continue with the knockout system in Sydney (January 6-8).
The United Cup takes place from Thursday 29 December to Sunday 8 January, in preparation for the Australian Open. The first Grand Slam of the year kicks off in Melbourne on January 16.
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