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Top U.S. wheelchair players headed to Portugal for BNP Paribas World Team Cup

Victoria Chiesa | April 19, 2023

Twelve of the U.S.'s best wheelchair tennis players will head to the Vilamoura Tennis Academy in Vilamoura, Portugal next month to represent the red, white and blue at the 2023 BNP Paribas World Team Cup, the wheelchair counterpart to the Billie Jean King Cup and Davis Cup. 


The competition will be played from May 1-7 and feature 44 teams from more than 20 countries. The Americans will field a team in all four divisions: men's, women's, quad and juniors, and the highest-ranking U.S. player in all four disciplines is set to compete.  

In 2023, U.S. hopes to build on last year's successes, including the best result for the American men in two decades. Last year, the men placed fourth, their highest finish since 2004. The women’s team finished with a bronze medal, for the second straight year, after defeating Colombia; the quad team finished fourth; and the junior team finished seventh, bettering its position from 2021.


The majority of last year’s rosters—including the trio of Jason Keatseangslip, Casey Ratzlaff and Conner Stroud responsible for the aforementioned exploits in the men's division—are returning for the U.S. in 2023, with the exception of first-time quad selections Andrew Bogdanov, a 28-year-old from Prescott, Ariz., and Steven Baxter. Currently ranked a career-high No. 38 in the world, Bogdanov won the first pro singles and doubles titles of his career this spring in Indian Wells. He'll be joined on the quad team by U.S. stalwart David Wagner and fellow first-timer Baxter, a 45-year-old native of Boise, Idaho who replaced the initially-nominated Bryan Barten on the U.S. roster. Baxter was ranked in the world's Top 20 in both singles and doubles as recently as last year.


In addition, 16-year-old Maylee Phelps from Portland, Ore., the world No. 1 in the junior girls' rankings, will make her debut on the women’s squad after competing on the U.S. junior team in each of the last two years. She joins Shelby Baron and Dana Mathewson, who are making their 10th and 11th appearances on the women's team, respectively. 


The junior team will be made up of Charlie Cooper, Tomas Majetic and Max Wong, all of whom have suited up in this competition before. Fifteen-year-old Cooper of La Quinta, Calif. is the top-ranked American in the junior boys' rankings at No. 17, and is on the U.S. roster for the third year in a row; Majetic was a member of the 2022 junior team, and Wong made his debut in 2021.

Competing nations will first be divided into round-robin groups, from which each first-place team will advance to the knockout rounds. Sixteen teams will compete in the men's bracket, with 12 making up the women's, and eight each in the quads and juniors. Winning semifinalists will play for the championship; losing semifinalists will play for bronze and fourth place; and non-advancing nations will also play again to determine final standings. More information on the 2023 event can be found here.


The inaugural World Team Cup was held with six men’s teams in California in 1985. The women’s competition began the following year, with quad and junior events introduced in 1998 and 2000, respectively. The U.S. has won 23 World Team Cups across the four divisions all-time.


Click here for the USTA's World Team Cup homepage.

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