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By Richard Pagliaro | Thursday, July 20, 2017

Nicolas Mahut

Davis Cup matches will soon be reduced to best-of-three sets if the reforms the ITF finalized today are approved in an August 4th vote.

Photo credit: Davis Cup

Going the Davis Cup distance will soon be a less demanding experience.

Davis Cup matches will be reduced to best-of-three sets from the current best-of-five set format if reforms the International Tennis Federation board of directors finalized today are approved in an August 4th vote.

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The reforms are part of a planned wide-ranging restructuring for Davis Cup and Fed Cup formats.

If the revisions are approved by ITF member nations at the 2017 ITF AGM in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam on August 4th, then the rule changes would go into effect in 2018.

The reforms include:

- All singles matches in Davis Cup will be played as best-of-three tiebreak sets, rather than best-of-five sets. Davis Cup will retain its three-day format, with doubles still played on the Saturday over the best-of-five sets.

- The finalists in both Davis Cup and Fed Cup will be guaranteed the choice of hosting their first-round tie in the following year.

- The Davis Cup dead rubber policy will be amended to reduce the number of dead rubbers. If the fourth match is decisive, and lasts three sets or at least 90 minutes, the fifth match will not be played. A match tiebreak will replace the third set in all Davis Cup dead rubbers.

- Hosting costs for national associations will be reduced. This includes the reduction of match court availability by one day.

- Player on-site commitments will be reduced.

Belgium will host Australia on a red clay court in Brussels in the September 15-17th Davis Cup semifinals.

The winner of that tie will face the winner of the Serbia at France semifinal in the November 24-26th Davis Cup final.  


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