Big changes ahead for the Davis Cup. The ITF AGM today voted in favor of reforms to the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas designed to “secure the long-term status of the competition.” Starting next year, the competition will see 18 nations and the world’s best players compete in a week long season finale to crown the Davis Cup champions. The first edition of the new event will be held in Madrid or Lille from Nov. 18-24 with the inaugural host city to be announced in the coming weeks.
“I am delighted that the nations have today voted to secure the long-term status of Davis Cup by BNP Paribas,” said ITF President David Haggerty. “By voting in favor of these reforms, we will be able to work with Kosmos to realize the huge potential of the competition and elevate it to new standards. This new event will create a true festival of tennis and entertainment which will be more attractive to players, to fans, to sponsors and to broadcasters.”
The 25-year agreement represents a total investment of US $3 billion into tennis with a significant increase in the nations’ income from the competition and a new player prize fund of $20 million. The new format will involve a qualifying round in February, in which 24 teams will take part in home and away matches. The 12 winners will secure a direct place into the final and will join the four semifinalists of the previous year – who qualify without having to play in February – as well as two wildcards that will be announced before the draw for the qualifying round.