Davis Cup Overhaul Wins Approval From Tennis Officials

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ORLANDO, Fla. — The Worldwide Tennis Federation’s bid to radically revamp the Davis Cup competitors was ratified on Thursday morning at its annual basic assembly after months of debate and division over the proposal.

The adjustments acquired 71 p.c of the votes, clearing the two-thirds majority required to go.

Whereas practically each tennis stakeholder believes that the 118-year-old Davis Cup must evolve, this vote provided an opportunity for a wholesale restart, making a format practically unrecognizable from the present one. As a substitute of a collection of matches scattered all year long all over the world, the late rounds of the brand new competitors can be held in a single week, bringing 18 groups to 1 impartial web site for round-robin and knockout rounds.

The proposal, spearheaded by the I.T.F. president, David Haggerty, was backed by a $three billion dedication over 25 years from Kosmos, a European funding group.

Haggerty and different tennis officers believed Davis Cup wanted an overhaul as a result of tennis’s greatest stars didn’t repeatedly take part and the occasion didn’t generate sufficient international curiosity and income.

Grand Slam federations had been break up on the vote: France and the US voted for it, whereas Australia and Britain voted in opposition to it. These international locations held essentially the most energy, with 12 votes every within the I.T.F.’s weighted system.

Many international locations didn’t make their ultimate selections till the times and even hours earlier than Thursday’s vote. The Garden Tennis Affiliation, the governing physique for the game in Britain, introduced its opposition to the measure on Wednesday afternoon. That call marked a break up from the All England Membership, the host of Wimbledon, which had voiced assist for it.

The vote, like all debates and shows earlier than it, was held in secret on the annual basic assembly on the Ritz-Carlton in Orlando. Although the breakdown of votes by nation is not going to be revealed, developments may very well be noticed by interviews with the leaders of assorted federations.

Federations in Africa and the Americas had been poised to vote unanimously in favor of the measure.

Together with Australia, Europe anchored the opposition to the reform. Britain’s dissent was joined by Germany, the one nation outdoors of the Grand Slam nations that wields the utmost 12 votes. There was additionally dissent throughout Central and Southern Europe, with Croatia, Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Poland, Serbia and Slovakia leaning in opposition to the measure.

Greater than geographic, nonetheless, the divisions had been financial. Smaller federations expressed eagerness for the infusion of cash promised by the Kosmos deal, considering it may very well be their lifeline to growing expertise.

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