12/17/2020 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 12/17/2020 12:17
The ITF has announced today that the Billie Jean King Cup by BNP Paribas Play-Off ties, initially scheduled for 5-6 February 2021, will move to 16-17 April 2021 as the tennis calendar continues to be impacted by the pandemic. The calendar is subject to continued assessments relating to health and safety, international travel policies and governmental approval of sporting events.
Eight two-day home-and-away Play-Off ties will now take place during the week of the Finals, which will be held from 13-18 April 2021.
The decision provides increased certainty for competing teams and has been made by the ITF Billie Jean King Cup Committee in consultation with the WTA.
The home-and-away ties are an integral part of the World Cup of Tennis competition - which was rebranded the Billie Jean King Cup in September 2020 - and feature 16 national teams who will compete for the chance to progress to the Billie Jean King Cup Qualifiers in 2022. The eight losing nations will compete in their respective regional Group I event in 2022.
The Play-Off ties will take place in eight different cities around the world whilst the Billie Jean King Cup Finals 2021 will be hosted in Budapest, Hungary, for the first time. Up to 140 of the top players from 28 nations will be in action across nine countries during an exceptional week of international team tennis culminating with the crowning of the 2021 world champions.
Katrina Adams, Billie Jean King Cup Committee Chair, said: 'We are looking forward to what will be a fantastic week of international team tennis, showcasing the best of the Billie Jean King Cup competition. We would like to thank all of the national associations, hosts, captains and players involved for their understanding and flexibility as we continue to respond to the challenges posed by the pandemic.'
All events will be subject to strict health and safety guidelines.
The eight Play-off ties are:
Poland (c) v Brazil
Great Britain (c) v Mexico
Serbia (c) v Canada
Latvia (c) v India
Japan (c) v Ukraine
Romania (c) v Italy
Argentina (c) v Kazakhstan
Netherlands (c) v China
(c) = choice of ground
The eight winning nations will progress to the Billie Jean King Cup Qualifiers in 2022. The eight losing nations will compete in their respective regional Group I event in 2022.