Davis Cup reform: Nations vote for 18-team season-ending event

Davis Cup reform: Nations vote for 18-team season-ending event

Proposals to revamp the Davis Cup into a season-ending 18-team event were backed by national federations at the International Tennis Federation annual general meeting in Orlando, Florida.

Wally Masur, who was Australia's Davis Cup team captain until 2015, stated: 'Most of us agree the Davis Cup needs some tinkering around the edges to ensure the best players play, but the radical overhaul in this proposal will decimate over 100 years of tennis tradition that has helped grow the men's game to this point'.

The first championship in this new series will take place in either Madrid or Lille, France from November 18-24, 2019, the ITF has said.

The two worst qualified teams from the round robin stage will be relegated to the zone groups the following year and the remaining nations that did not qualify for the semi-finals will have to participate in February's qualifying round the following season.

Regardless of this, the Davis Cup format's change is coming into effect, leaving Auger-Aliassime and other players like him, feeling left out in the cold by the ITF's decision. They will be joined by the four semifinalists from the previous year, along with two wildcard teams.

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Gerard Piqué, the Spain and Barcelona footballer, led the celebrations...

Commenting on the matter, ITF President David Haggerty said: "I am delighted that the nations have today voted to secure the long-term status of Davis Cup by BNP Paribas".

The organization said the new format will "project Davis Cup into the 21st century" and elevate the competition to "the heights it deserves".

The Davis Cup is now played in February, April, September and November at home and away venues.

The gripe that Auger-Aliassime seems to have with the new Davis Cup final format stems from the fact the event will now take place at a pre-determined neutral site, like the FIFA World Cup, instead of the traditional home-and-away format that will guarantee that at least one of the competing nations will get a chance to play in front of their home fans.

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