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About Fed Cup
The women equivalent of Davis Cup is called Fed Cup. As in many other sports, one needs to go quite a bit forward in time before people began to consider a tournament for women national teams. It was precisely 63 years from the first Davis Cup tournament that the first Fed Cup was held.
It was in connection with the union’s 50th birthday. But actually there were initiatives for such tournaments already 40 years earlier. The American tennis player Hazel Hotchkiss Wightman initiated an annual tournament between the United States and Great Britain.
Already in 1919 she proposed a women-only version of the Davis Cup, however when it was refused she took the initiative to create the Wightman Cup, which was played up until 1989.
First lady in tennis
In 1963 the International Tennis Federation introduced the Federation Cup. The first edition of the tournament attracted the participation of 16 nations and was supported by the sport’s top players right from the start. The first match between Australia and the United States was played in the Queen’s Club in London and was a clash between the four Grand Slam champions Darlene Hard, Billie Jean King, Maggie Smith and Lesley Turner.
Hazel Hotchkiss Wightman is called the first lady in tennis, but the nickname also fits very well with the US Fed Cup team. This is because they top the list of nations that have won the tournament most times. The US has won the tournament 17 times in total, which is nine times more than the Czech Republic, which is number two on the list. It was especially in the late 70s and up through the ’80s that the US women were victorious enough to make such statistics. The team consisted among others of Cris Evert and Martina Navratilova. However, it has been some years since the United States have been able to celebrate a “world championship” in women’s tennis. The latest victory for the US was back in 2000, but it is Italy, Russia and the Czech Republic, which since 2004 have shared championships between them.
|Winner 2014:||Czech Republic|
|Winner 2012:||Czech Republic|