World Cup of Tennis set to replace Davis Cup in massive shake-up

Davis Cup France celebrations

The International Tennis Federation (ITF) has announced a proposal for a major revamp of the Davis Cup with the event set to be replaced by an 18-nation World Cup of Tennis Finals.

After signing a 25-year, $3 billion partnership with investment group Kosmos, the ITF revealed that the week-long World Cup, which will take place at a yet to be decided venue, will be put forward for approval by the ITF Board later this year.

The event, which could start in November 2019, was unanimously endorsed by the ITF’s board of directors and several cities have already expressed an interest in hosting the tournament.

“This is a complete game-changer for the ITF and for tennis,” ITF chairman David Haggerty said.

“Our vision is to create a major season-ending finale that will be a festival of tennis and entertainment, featuring the world’s greatest players representing their nations to decide the Davis Cup champions.

“This new partnership will not only create a true World Cup of Tennis, but will also unlock record levels of new investment for future generations of tennis players and fans around the world.”

The World Cup will kick off with a round-robin format before it becomes a do-or-die affair with a knockout phase. Matches will be two singles and one doubles rubber while it will use best-of-three sets.

Sixteen World Group nations will automatically qualify for the Finals while two other nations are yet to be selected.

Barcelona and Spain footballer Gerard Pique, who is the Kosmos founder and president, says the revamp will “elevate” the Davis Cup to new heights.

“Kosmos is thrilled to join in this exciting partnership with the ITF,” Pique said.

“Together we can elevate Davis Cup by BNP Paribas to new heights by putting on a must-see World Cup of Tennis Finals featuring the top nations and top players.”