Draw, format, prize money and everything you need to know
Tennis 2023 kicks off next week with the inaugural edition of the United Cup in Australia.
As players prepare to ring in the new year and kick off their seasons, here’s what you need to know about the team competition, which brings together the best from both the Hologic WTA Tour and the ATP Tour.
When is the tournament?
The United Cup is a mixed competition of 18 teams. The 11-day tournament begins on December 29 and will be played in three cities, Sydney (Sydney Olympic Park Tennis Centre), Brisbane (Queensland Tennis Centre) and Perth (RAC Arena).
The Sydney and Brisbane teams will play on outdoor hard courts. Perth will feature an indoor hard court. All three venues will use Dunlop’s Australian Open balls.
Who plays where in Week 1: united cup | Adelaide 1 | auckland
What is the format?
The group stage will be played from December 29 to January 3. Each city will host two groups from three countries, competing in a round-robin format. Played over two days, the qualifiers will consist of two ATP and two WTA singles matches between the No. 1 and No. 2 ranked players and one mixed doubles match. If the tie closes at 2-2 after singles, the mixed doubles match will decide the winner.
The winner of each of the two groups will advance to the City Final on Wednesday 4 January to determine which team will advance to the United Cup Final Four. The fourth team will be the runner-up in the City Final with the best record of their three games.
The Final Four will have a travel day on Thursday, January 5. The semi-finals will be played over two days on Friday January 6 and Saturday January 7 in Sydney.
When are the finals?
The United Cup final will be played on Sunday, January 8 from 1:00 pm in Sydney.
How have the groups been drawn?
Six countries were ranked based on the ATP ranking of their No.1 player, six countries were ranked based on the WTA ranking of their No.1 individual player, and six countries were ranked based on the best combined ranking of their No.1 ATP and WTA players. Australia received entry as the host nation.
The top six finishers are #1 Greece, #2 Poland, #3 USA, #4 Spain, #5 Italy and #6 France.
This is how the groups were drawn:
Who plays and where?
The United Cup features a star-studded field that includes WTA World No.1 Iga Swiatek, reigning Australian Open champion Rafael Nadal and WTA Finals champion Caroline Garcia. The all-star duo of Maria Sakkari and Stefanos Tsitsipas lead the top-seeded Greek team, while World No.3 Jessica Pegula, Madison Keys and Taylor Fritz headline a strong United States team.
United Cup: complete list of players
Fresh off their Billie Jean King Cup victory, Belinda Bencic and Jil Teichmann join Stan Wawrinka for the Swiss. Petra Kvitova and Marie Bouzkova will lead the way for the historically strong Czech Republic.
In total, the United Cup court features eight of the top 20 on the Hologic WTA Tour. With the numbers 1 and 2 of each group set to meet in singles, these are some of the possible matches during the group stage:
Swiatek vs. Bencic
Swiatek vs. putintseva
Bencic vs. Putintseva
Haddad Maya vs. Trevisan
pegula vs. Kvitova
Badosa vs. Tomljanovic
Keys vs. Bouzkova
Sakkari vs. Mertens
Garcia vs. Martic
Bugle vs Vekic
Garcia vs. Podoroska
What is the prize money and ranking points on offer?
The total prize money for the United Cup is $15 million, split equally between the ATP and WTA. Individual prize money is based on ranking, match wins and team wins. No points will be awarded for mixed doubles.
A player can earn a maximum of 500 points per week, depending on their ranking.
For a full breakdown of points and prize money, Click here.