14 September 2018

As Glasgow witnesses the end of an era for the Davis Cup, long live the Davis Cup

It is all change for the Davis Cup next year. Catch the last of the old school format over the next 3 days as Team GB play Uzbekistan at the Emirates Arena in Glasgow

It is the end of an era as Britain takes on Uzbekistan in the Davis Cup over the next three days. As Jamie Murray, the US Open mixed doubles champ, Cameron Norrie and back-from-a-drugs-ban Dan Evans and their team mates prepare to do battle in Glasgow, it will be the last time the 118-year-old event takes place in its current format.

From next year, controversial and major new changes are coming in. Designed to attract more elite players and bigger audiences, the changes have been both booed and cheered to the echo. Based on its Davis Cup rankings, largely due to winning the whole event in 2015 (above the cup on its UK tour, reaches the Pavilion in north London), Team GB is already assured a place in the next year’s competition. It does however, need to win to be seeded.  but whatever the outcome over the new few days, teams will be doing it all differently next time.

Out goes
The 16 best nations ‘World Group’, playing a knock out over 4 weekends spread throughout the year

In comes
A 24-team qualifying event in February. Ties (elimination rounds) will be held over two days, either home or away.  

Out go
Five set matches

In come
Three set matches

Out goes
A final comprising the best of five matches (4 singles and 1 doubles)

In comes 
A finals week where all ties are the best of three matches (2 singles and 1 doubles). These are played on the same day in two sessions.

Out goes
A final held over 3 days between two nations who have successfully come through the World Group knock out

In comes
An end of year, week-long final (18-24 November) with two football World Cup-style stages: a group, round robin stage, followed by a knock out. In the group stage, there will be 18 teams (12 qualifiers, the 4 semi finalists from the previous year plus two wild cards, an entirely new element in Davis Cup). They will compete in six round robin groups of 3 teams. The six winners, plus the two two best runners up (decided on set and game records), go through to the knock out stage.


There are separate rules for teams outside the top 24 in different ‘zones’. See the Davis Cup website for the rules.