ITF names replacement teams for suspended Russia

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ITF names replacement teams for suspended Russia

International Tennis Federation (ITF) has named Serbia and Australia in place of suspended Russia for the upcoming Davis Cup and Billie Jean King Cup ties.

Russia and Belarus have been suspended from participating in international team competitions following Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

Serbia and Australia have been named as replacements as they are the highest-ranked sides among the 2021 losing semi-finalists from their respective competitions.

Slovakia and Belgium are already through to the Billie Jean King Cup finals. Slovakia were set to take on Australia in next month’s qualifiers for the women’s team event but will receive a bye. Belgium will automatically receive access to the finals as they were due to play suspended Belarus.

The three sides will be joined by a yet-to-be-named host. Last year’s runner-up Switzerland and the remaining seven winners of April’s qualifiers will round up the teams for November’s finals.

In the Davis Cup, a wild card for the finals previously awarded to Serbia will be handed to one of the 12 countries knocked out in the qualifiers earlier. The 12 winning teams from the qualifiers, Croatia and Britain are the other confirmed sides for the finals, which will see the 16 nations competing in four groups across four cities in September.

The top eight teams will advance to the knockout stages, which will serve as the season-ending event of the men’s tennis calendar in a fifth host city at the end of November.

Russia will be unable to defend their crowns as they currently hold both the Davis Cup and Billie Jean King Cup. They are just the fourth nation to win both competitions in the same year.

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