Team Selection Guidelines
By Board approval, the USTA Senior International Selection Committee has extended and revised the eligibility requirement and timelines as follows:
- Approved 24-month USTA Category I USTA National Championship eligibility requirement, the option to participate in one USTA Super Category II National Tournament or one USTA Category II National Tournament within the last 24 months or participation in one Designated Open Sectional Championship within the last 12 months to fulfill the eligibility requirement; and
- Approved to lengthen the selection time period for results that will be considered for selection from 24 months to 36 months.
The following are the 2021 ITF Young Senior, Senior, & Super Senior World Championship Team USA player selection guidelines:
1. Application Deadline. Any player who wants to be considered for selection to Team USA must complete the application posted on the USTA website. ADVERTISEMENT The application deadline for Team USA consideration must be at least one month in advance of the selection date. Selection dates differ for ITF Young Seniors, Seniors and Super Seniors Teams. Application deadlines and selection dates will be posted on the USTA website.
Only players who have met, or plan to meet, the Minimum Tournament Play requirements set forth in Section 7 below should apply for consideration in that age group. Top players from younger age divisions who will be aging up are encouraged to apply to the age division to which they are aging up. Players who fail to complete the application for Team USA Consideration by the published deadline will not be considered for the team selection.
All players are urged to pay special attention to the Minimum Tournament Play requirement in Section 7. It is the player’s responsibility to meet this requirement. The Senior International Team Selection Group cannot waive this requirement.
2. Eligibility List. The names of players who have completed the application for Team USA Consideration will be posted on the USTA website as a Preliminary Applicant List within three days of the Application Deadline. Existence on this list does not confirm that the players have met the minimum play requirements.
If you believe your name is omitted from the Preliminary Applicant List in error, or there is data missing or incorrect on your player record, you must contact Robert Gorden within five days from the date the Preliminary Applicant List is published. The Final Applicant List will be published on that date on the USTA website.
Note: USTA reserves the right to contact additional players if a team cannot be filled by players on the Final Applicant List.
3. Citizenship, ITF Regulations. All players must be in good standing with the USTA, be a U.S. citizen (or be in the process of obtaining U.S. Citizenship, see the paragraph below for details), have a current valid U.S. passport, lived in the United States for 24 consecutive months and not represented any other country during the period of 36 months immediately preceding the event. A player must also have a current ITF IPIN in order to play for Team USA.
Successful completion of the Safe Play program is REQUIRED for all players who wish to participate as a member of Team USA. The successful completion of the Safe Play program must be accomplished within 14 days following a player's selection to Team USA. Any player who does not complete the Safe Play program will NOT be allowed to become a member of Team USA. Please refer to Section 12 of these Guidelines for further information regarding the Safe Play requirement.
In some circumstances, players may be eligible to play for Team USA before obtaining U.S. Citizenship. A player can apply for a waiver to play for Team USA only if he/she is in the process of obtaining U.S. Citizenship. This waiver process, should that player be selected to Team USA, will be facilitated by USTA. If a player wants to take advantage of this possibility, he/she must submit the following at the time of team application:
Copy of passport of current country of citizenship
Copy of U.S. permanent resident card or visa
Completed ITF Player Eligibility Form
Copy of official documentation detailing your U.S. Citizenship application, complete with application date and current application status.
In the event you have obtained an attorney, please include a letter from your attorney (on letterhead) detailing your U.S. Citizenship application, complete with application date and current status.
A letter to the ITF addressing the following questions and topics:
Are you married to a U.S. Citizen?
Do you have any children who are U.S. Citizens?
Explain what it means to you to play for Team USA.
When were you first eligible to apply for U.S. Citizenship?
On what date did you apply for U.S. Citizenship?
Detail the current status of your application for U.S. Citizenship.
If you did not apply for U.S. Citizenship immediately upon becoming eligible, please explain your delay in application.
If you have questions about this process please contact the Adult Tennis Department.
4. Team Makeup. Each team will consist of four (4) total players. Player selection may include consideration of a player’s doubles record. A doubles “specialist” may be considered for selection, but is not required in the event other players selected for a team have strong records in singles and doubles.
5. Physical Condition. Players must certify that they are in good health and are prepared to undertake the extensive travel and strenuous physical exertions that will be required of team players. Any player who develops a health/physical problem that could prevent them from competing at any level required by team play at any time up to the date of travel should contact the USTA Adult Tennis department immediately regarding their physical condition. Failure to do so will be considered poor sportsmanship and thus potentially impacting future team consideration.
In the case of a selected player who must withdraw from the team due to injury or illness, a medical certificate from a health professional must be submitted to the USTA Adult Tennis department in accordance with ITF Seniors Regulations.
6. Age Division Considered. A player may only be selected to represent Team USA on one team in each calendar year.
7. Minimum Tournament Play. A minimum of one USTA Category I National Championship is required to be played in singles or doubles (not mixed doubles) in the age division for which a player is seeking selection within the 12 months prior to the posting of the Final Applicant list on the USTA website.
In the case of a player aging up from a younger age division into an older age division, the minimum requirement to play in one USTA Category I National Championship in singles or doubles can be met in the younger age division. Meeting the minimum play requirement does not mean a player will be selected to play for Team USA.
It is the player’s responsibility to meet this requirement. The Senior International Team Selection Group cannot waive this requirement.
8. Records Considered. A player’s record will be considered for the 24 months prior to the Final Applicant lists published on the USTA website (the “selection time period”). In the event an alternate must be selected to replace a previously selected player, only player records for the selection time period will be considered. The dates the Final Applicant lists are posted (which determines the selection time period) vary annually depending on the scheduled dates of the ITF World Team Championships. If the published dates for the World Team Championships are changed for any reason, the Senior International Team Selection Group shall have the right to extend the selection time period at its discretion.
In the event that the Selection Committee deems an age-up applicant’s 24-month player record insufficient in terms of head-to-head matches with other applicants, the Selection Committee may in its discretion, review and weigh the age-up applicant’s record outside of the 24-month period.
Player records for the selection time period as published to Tennislink and itftennis.com will be considered. It shall be the player’s responsibility to make certain that the player’s record published on Tennislink and itftennis.com is accurate.
Significant direct and indirect wins and losses against players and teams during the selection time period (as defined in the previous paragraph) will be considered. NTRP divisions results shall not be included.
Rankings/Standings will not be considered in the selection process.
Results in sanctioned tournaments, including team events that earn ranking points, will be considered. Results from different age divisions are also considered. The following are the most important criteria without regard to priority:
Results from USTA Category I National Championships
Results on the surface of the applied for, upcoming World Team Championship
Results in the age division being considered (or in the case of a player aging up, results in that player’s actual age division)
Length and strength of a playing record in singles and/or doubles.
9. Sportsmanship. Players selected to represent Team USA must be in good standing with the USTA. Exemplary sportsmanship is expected from every team member. As representatives of the U.S., all players are expected to conduct themselves in accordance with the highest standards of sportsmanship at all times. Captains are authorized to make all decisions as to lineups. Team members shall abide by the captain’s decisions. Players are expected to support the captain and uphold the “TEAM” concept. Player behavior in relation to tournament officials, the event, other players, fellow teammates, and/or the captain will be considered by the Selection Committee in future team selections.
The following are examples of poor sportsmanship which could prevent a player from qualifying or being considered to represent Team USA:
Disqualification or default by a USTA or ITF certified referee or umpire for poor conduct while participating in a USTA or ITF sanctioned event
USTA warning or suspension by any USTA district, section or national grievance committee related to a player’s poor conduct
Written grievance filed and verified by an ITF Official, Tournament Referee, USTA Representative, or USTA Cup player relating to play while on a Cup team
Suspension from play by the ITF under the Code of Conduct of the ITF Seniors Regulations
10. Selection Date. Notice of the timeline of the selection process including the selection date will be published on the USTA website no later than five months prior to the selection date. In the event of a change in location and/or dates for a cup, the Selection Date may need to be revised at the discretion of the Senior International Team Selection Group.
11. Team Selections. Players selected to represent Team USA will be posted on the USTA website within three business days of the date of team selection. Due to withdrawal, injury or official grievances, Team USA players are subject to change up to the starting date of the competition.
12. Safe Play guidelines. In order to represent Team USA all players must successfully complete the Safe Play program, which consists of a criminal background screen and training concerning athlete abuse prevention. The USTA has streamlined this requirement through its website. To begin the process, please visit www.usta.com/safeplay and select “Get Approved.” There is no cost to you to complete the process.
The training can take up to two hours to complete, but does not need to be completed in one sitting. The successful completion of the Safe Play program shall be accomplished within 14 days of a player’s selection to Team USA.
Of particular note:
- The criminal background screen meets the criteria requirements set forth by the USOPC. Should you participate in any event governed by the USOPC or train at a USOPC facility, this background screen can be shared electronically to satisfy the USOPC requirement.
- The training is required and provided by the U.S. Center for SafeSport; an independent organization focused on protecting and supporting the wellbeing of all athletes within the Olympic movement. It outlines the core concepts behind creating a safe and positive sport environment and addresses how to identify and prevent sexual misconduct and abuse. The training also provides the legal requirements for reporting a concern about abuse and how the reporting process works as well as how to recognize, respond to and prevent various forms of misconduct, including bullying, hazing, harassment and physical and emotional abuse.
The Safe Play process must be completed in order for you to participate on Team USA. Please do not delay as background screen results can take up to 10 days to complete.
13. Grievances. Any player who feels an error was made in the selection process may file a grievance with the USTA Grievance Committee. That player may do so by sending a letter outlining the details of the grievance sent by first class, certified, or registered mail. It should be sent to the Grievance Chairperson, c/o USTA Office of the General Counsel, 70 West Red Oak Lane, White Plains, New York 10604, within thirty (30) days following the date on which the alleged grievance occurred. No appeals or requests for review will be considered by the USTA Senior International Team Selection Group.
If there are any inquiries regarding the guidelines listed above, please contact the USTA Adult Tennis department.