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Fed Cup Renamed For Billie Jean King

By Erik Gudris

The International Tennis Federation, in a fitting tribute to one of the sport’s great players and pioneers, announced that Fed Cup will be renamed as the Billie Jean King Cup Finals.

Founded in 1963, the largest annual international team competition in women’s sports will host 12 teams who will compete in the finals next April in Budapest, Hungary.

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“There is nothing quite like the feeling of representing your country and being part of a team, which is why this competition is so special and important to met,” Billie Jean King said. “It is an honor to have the women’s world cup of tennis carry my name and a responsibility I will not take lightly. Our job is to share this vision with future generations of young girls, because if you can see it, you can be it.”

ITF President David Haggerty said, “From playing the first Fed Cup as a member of the victorious US team in 1963, founding the WTA and becoming its first President, to being the first female athlete awarded the US Presidential Medal of Freedom, Billie Jean King has never stopped breaking new ground. Today she adds another ‘first’ to that list. The new name is a fitting tribute to everything she has achieved and will provide a lasting legacy that will inspire future generations of players and fans.”

King competed in the inaugural tournament in 1963. She has won the event 10 times, more than other player in history, including seven times as a player and four times as a captain (once as a player-captain).

King was awarded the Fed Cup Award of Excellence in 2010, and was appointed as the competition’s first Global Ambassador in 2019.

In addition to the name change, the event will also increase player prize money to over $15 million dollars, which will bring it in line with the equivalent tournament, Davis Cup. This is also the first global sports event to be named for a woman.

Current and former players took to social media to congratulate the all-time great.

Photo credit: USTA/US Open