2024 United Cup format – how does it work?

Ken Rosewall Arena United Cup format
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The anticipation is building for the much-awaited 2024 United Cup, the prestigious international outdoor hard court mixed-gender team tennis tournament with its unique format jointly organized by the ATP and the WTA. Set to unfold in the vibrant cities of Sydney and Perth from December 29, 2023, to January 7, 2024, this second edition promises to be a thrilling showcase of talent and teamwork as the 2024 tour officially gets underway.

As the stakes are raised, so too are the rewards, with the 2024 United Cup offering coveted ATP and WTA rankings points. The champions will seize a maximum of 500 points, adding a compelling layer of significance to this elite competition.

But what truly sets the United Cup apart is its unique format, carefully designed to test the mettle of mixed-gender teams representing 18 countries. Stay tuned as we delve into the intricacies of the 2024 United Cup format, uncovering the drama and excitement that await in each phase.

United Cup qualifying process

Before we dive into the United Cup format, let’s talk about the qualification process. Qualifying for the United Cup is a straightforward yet competitive process involving 18 countries. Each country’s entry is determined by the ATP and WTA rankings of their top singles players.

Six nations secure spots based on their highest-ranked male player in the ATP standings, and another six qualify through the top-ranked female player in the WTA rankings. The remaining six countries earn entry based on the combined rankings of their leading ATP and WTA singles players.

Australia, as the host nation, gets a direct entry into the tournament, either through ranking or as a wildcard. This ensures a diverse mix of teams for the United Cup.

United Cup format

The 2024 United Cup introduces a captivating format that unfolds over 11 days, setting the stage for intense mixed-gender team tennis action in the lead-up to the Australian Open. Commencing from December 29, 2023, to January 7, 2024, this tournament showcases 18 countries competing across multiple Australian cities.

The competition kicks off with a thrilling group phase in the first week, featuring six groups of three countries each. In each group, nations face off in head-to-head matchups, with each contest consisting of a men’s singles match, a women’s singles match, and a mixed doubles match. To secure victory, a team must win two out of these three matches in their head-to-head encounters.

The stakes are high in the group phase, as the six group winners earn coveted spots in the quarterfinals. They are joined by the two best second-place teams, setting the stage for the knockout rounds. The quarterfinals, held in both Perth and Sydney, mark the beginning of the single-elimination format. The semifinals and the final culminate in Sydney, promising tennis enthusiasts a thrilling conclusion to the United Cup.

United Cup format
Photo by Icon sport

A distinctive feature of the United Cup format is the emphasis on the top-ranked singles players, who represent their countries in the singles matches during the group phase. This adds a layer of individual prowess to the team dynamic, showcasing the talent of the highest-ranked players in each nation.

As the 2024 United Cup unfolds across cities in Australia, fans can anticipate an exciting blend of strategy, skill, and teamwork. With the countdown underway, the tournament’s unique format promises to deliver a memorable celebration of international mixed-gender team tennis, captivating audiences and setting the tone for the Australian Open.

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