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United Cup: Start date, schedule, how to watch & more

The United Cup is a mixed team event which takes place a matter of weeks before the Australian Open gets underway in Melbourne, with a host of ATP and WTA stars expected to take to the courts in Perth and Sydney.

The event is a very recent addition to the schedule and was won in its inaugural staging by the United States, who defeated Italy 4-0 in a one-sided final at the Ken Rosewall Arena in Sydney.

The appearance of leading lights in the game is assured in some part by up to 500 ranking points being available to both the ATP and WTA stars.

What2024 United Cup
WherePerth & Sydney
WhenFriday December 29th, 2023 - Sunday January 7th, 2024
How to watchNine Network, 9Now

United Cup dates

The second United Cup is scheduled to start on Friday December 29th, 2023 and run all the way through to Sunday January 7th, 2024.

The group stage finishes on Wednesday January 3rd, with the quarter-finals starting on the same day and being completed two days later.

The semi-finals both take place in Sydney on Saturday 6th January, with the showpiece final scheduled for the following day at the same venue.

United Cup venues

The initial 2023 tournament was played across three cities - Brisbane, Perth and Sydney - but this time around the action will be focused on the RAC Arena in Perth and the Ken Rosewall Arena in Sydney.

The six groups will be spread equally across the two venues, which will also host two quarter-finals apiece, before the semi-finals and final all take place in Sydney.

The RAC Arena opened in 2012 and is home to the Perth Wildcats basketball team, while it has also played host to top-class tennis, netball and UFC fights.

The Ken Rosewall Arena is part of the Sydney Olympic Park Tennis Centre, which was built for the 2000 summer games and is essentially an arena designed specifically for tennis, although netball was due to be played there three years ago.

United Cup how to watch

All of the action at the United Cup will be available to watch in Australia via the Nine Network and 9Now.

United Cup format

The format for the United Cup is somewhat complicated, with 18 teams split into six groups of three, with the qualifying countries decided by the highest rankings of their leading players on the ATP and WTA Tours.

The six highest-ranked countries from the ATP Tour are joined by six from the WTA Tour, with the final six places awarded on the combined rankings of the leading players on both tours, with hosts Australia guaranteed a spot if they do not qualify on those criteria.

The six groups follow a round-robin format, with all group winners qualifying for the quarter-finals, along with the runner-up with the best record at each of the two venues.

From the quarter-final stage on it is a straight knockout format and each tie in the tournament is comprised of one men's singles match, one women's singles match and one mixed doubles match.

The 18 teams playing in the 2024 United Cup are:

PolandGreeceUnited States
CanadaGreat BritainChina

United Cup previous winners

The United Cup has only been held once before and it was the United States who took the honours in 2023, defeating Italy 4-0 in the final in Sydney - with the tournament having been slimmed down to three matches per tie for the 2024 iteration.

USA, represented by Taylor Fritz, Frances Tiafoe, Madison Keys and Jessica Pegula, enjoyed a superb run of results as they saw off Czechia and Germany to top Group C for the loss of just one rubber.

Great Britain were then downed 4-1 in the quarter-finals, before Poland were whitewashed 5-0 in the semis, with Pegula claiming a notable 6-2 6-2 victory over Iga Swiatek in the opening rubber.

The final against Italy was equally one-sided, with Pegula and Tiafoe claiming victories before Fritz downed Matteo Berrettini 7-6 7-6 to clinch the trophy.

Keys added a further win before the closing doubles rubber was scrapped to allow the American aces to start the celebrations.

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