Billie Jean King Cup Play-Off Preview: Great Britain vs Sweden
Great Britain may not have qualified for the Billie Jean King (BJK) Cup Finals this year, but they do have the opportunity to get back into the mix in 2024.
And we have all the information about their upcoming BJK Cup Play-off tie against Sweden:
What is the Billie Jean King Cup?
The Billie Jean King Cup was founded as the Federation Cup back in 1963, to celebrate the 50 year anniversary of the International Tennis Federation (ITF).
It changed its name in 1995 to the Fed Cup, and was altered once again in 2020 to honour the legendary former No.1 Billie Jean King.
Team USA won it first, but the question of the day is:
— Billie Jean King (@BillieJeanKing) November 6, 2023
The BJK Cup is labelled as the ‘World Cup of Tennis’ by the aforementioned King, and features an array of different divisions from the World Group to Group IV in some regions.
Nations compete to work their way up the different groups, with the eventual goal to qualify for the BJK Cup Finals that take place at the end of each year.
Some ties are still played in a home-and-away format, however the finals are now held in one pre-arranged location.
How do the Billie Jean King Cup Play-Offs work?
The BJK Cup Play-offs are contested between the eight losing nations from the 2023 Qualifiers and the seven nations that won promotion from their regional Group I events (plus the highest finishing non-promoted team).
Last year, Great Britain achieved their best performance at the BJK Cup in 44 years, reaching the semi-finals after being awarded a wildcard for the Finals in Glasgow.
However, they were unable to follow up on this success earlier this year, when they were beaten by France in their Qualifier tie in Coventry.
Sweden won their Group I back in April, confirming their promotion to the 2023 Play-Offs and consequently setting up this clash with Great Britain.
The tie will be contested over five rubbers, with four singles rubbers and one doubles rubber, and the winner will advance to the BJK Cup Qualifiers next year, while the loser is relegated to the regional Group I in 2024.
When is the Billie Jean King Cup between Great Britain and Sweden?
The BJK Cup Play-Off tie between Great Britain and Sweden will take place this coming weekend (11th-12th September).
Play gets underway at 2pm (GMT) on Saturday with two singles rubbers, before continuing on Sunday at 12pm (GMT) with the potential of three matches (one doubles, two singles).
Where is the Billie Jean King Cup tie between Great Britain and Sweden held?
Great Britain are the hosts for the Qualifier tie against Sweden, which will take place on indoor hard courts at the Copper Box Arena in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London.
It is not the first time that Anne Keothavong’s Great Britain have played at this venue, with more than 11,000 fans present for their victory over Kazakhstan back in 2019.
Heading to the @CopperBoxArena 👊
The Lexus GB @BJKCup Team will take on Sweden in London this November 👇
— LTA (@the_LTA) August 30, 2023
Who is playing for Great Britain and Sweden at the Billie Jean King Cup?
This weekend’s BJK Cup Qualifier clash will be the seventh between these two nations, with the head-to-head currently sat at three apiece.
Sweden were the victors in the most recent tie back in 2012, that featured now captain Anne Keothavong as a player and a 19-year-old Heather Watson.
Here is how the teams lineup for this coming weekend:
Great Britain – Captained by Anne Keothavong
|Player||Ranking||BJK Cup Record|
|Katie Boulter||No.58 (Singles)||9-3|
|Jodie Burrage||No.93 (Singles)||Debut|
|Harriet Dart||No.138 (Singles)||3-6|
|Heather Watson||No.169 (Singles)/No.88 (Doubles)||23-12|
|Maia Lumsden||No.74 (Doubles)||Debut|
Sweden – Captained by Johanna Larsson
|Player||Ranking||BJK Cup Record|
|Rebecca Peterson||No.103 (Singles)||12-11|
|Mirjam Bjorklund||No.163 (Singles)||3-3|
|Kajsa Rinaldo Persson||No.372 (Singles)||8-6|
|Caijsa Hennemann||No.532 (Singles)||11-4|
|Lisa Zaar||No.503 (Doubles)||Debut|
"It's going to be an unbelievable atmosphere" 😍
— LTA (@the_LTA) November 6, 2023
How can you watch Great Britain vs Sweden at the Billie Jean King Cup?
You can watch Great Britain’s Qualifier tie against Sweden on either BBC iplayer or the BBC Sport website in the United Kingdom.
For more information on how to watch the BJK Cup in your location, click here.
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