Davis Cup Explained

Davis Cup is structured with a 16 nation World Group, contested over four weekends during the year. The remaining countries are then divided into three regional Zones depending on their location.

Find out more about the Davis Cup structure

Competition format

Davis Cup ties are played over three days, Friday to Sunday. There are five matches, known as rubbers, the winner being the first to win three rubbers.

The competition begins with two singles rubbers on the first day (Friday), a doubles rubber on the second day (Saturday) and finally two singles rubbers on the third day (Sunday). All rubbers are the best out of five sets and the home nation chooses the venue and court surface.

The tie is hosted by one of the competing nations. The host nation is decided depending on where the two teams played their most recent tie against each other, as long as the tie took place after 1970. Any ties before this date don’t count towards the choice of ground. If a nation had home advantage last time then it will be away next time, and vice versa. If the nations have never previously met, last met before 1970, or if they last faced each other at a neutral venue, then the choice of ground is decided by lot.

GB and Davis Cup

Great Britain have won the Davis Cup a total of nine times since it started in 1900, the most recent victory coming in 1936. Britain last reached the final in 1978, losing to USA 4-1 in California.

Last tie: 4-6 April 2014: Davis Cup World Group quarter-finals, GB v Italy (away)

Great Britain team battled hard but ultimately succumbed to some exceptional Italian clay-court play in Naples. With the tie evenly poised at 1-1 after the first two rubbers (the second of which had to be completed on Saturday due to a rain delay), Colin Fleming & Andy Murray won a four set doubles match to leave the Brits 2-1 ahead. However, Fabio Fognini and Andreas Seppi proved too good in the reverse singles, defeating Murray and James Ward respectively and denying Great Britain a first semi-final berth since 1981. 

Next tie: 6-8 March 2015: Davis Cup World Group round one, GB v USA (home)

Great Britain will play USA in the first round for the second straight year. The Brits defeated the Americans in San Diego in 2014 and will be looking to do the same in front of a home crowd in March. 


Davis Cup World Group dates for 2015

6-8 March

World Group first round

17-19 July

World Group quarter-finals

18-20 September

World Group semi-finals

27-29 November

World Group Final

Davis Cup Groups

World Group

World Group play-offs

The eight nations that win their World Group first round ties progress to play in the quarterfinals, semi-finals and subsequent final, at which the winning team is crowned champion.

The World Group play-offs decide promotion and relegation between the eight first round losers from World Group and eight winners from Zone Group I.

Zone Groups

The Zone Groups are divided into three regions: Americas, Asia/Oceania and Europe/Africa. Within each region there are either three or four divisions, Group I being the highest and Group IV being the lowest.