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US Juniors Capture BNP Paribas World Cup Team Title
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The U.S. juniors snapped a seven-year drought by capturing the BNP Paribas World Team Cup wheelchair title last weekend in Turkey.

The sixth-seeded American squad, which included returners Charlie Cooper (La Quinta, Calif.), Tomas Majetic (Boulder, Colo.), Max Wong (Flushing, N.Y.), and rookie Sabina Czauz (Thornton, Colo.), won the Americans’ fifth all-time title with a 2-0 win over Australia in the final at the Megasaray Club Belek in Antalya, Turkey.

The championship match was a repeat of what transpired in the group stage. Majetic beat Jin Woodman 6-0, 6-3 and Cooper served as the clincher with a 6-2, 6-1 win over Benjamin Wenzel. The doubles was not played.

"These kids came in and I think a lot of people thought they would be one of the favorites even though they were the No. 6 seed,” head coach Kevin Heim said. “To actually get to the point where we won, I think it exceeded all of my expectations. I think the biggest celebration of the entire week was that everyone got a chance to play multiple matches and contributed wins. This was a team victory, and top to bottom, they all did really well.”

The Americans were last victorious in the competition in 2017, which capped a run of three straight titles. But after the three-peat, the US did not field a junior team in 2018 or 2019. The Americans placed last in the field of eight teams in 2021, and seventh in 2022. Last year, the team won its pool and reached the final, where it lost to Great Britain.

This year, the Americans went 3-0 in round-robin play against Australia, Great Britain and the Netherlands. In their five ties in the week overall, the Americans lost just one match in 14 played.

"Coming into this year we put in a lot of work," Cooper, 16, said. "We had that one goal in mind of getting gold, so we all knew that it would take all four of us to get it done and we had to believe in each other and stay humble. We had to put a lot of work in and I couldn't be happier to get it done here in Turkey.”

The World Team Cup is the ITF’s flagship wheelchair tennis event. The inaugural event in California in 1985 involved six men’s teams. The women’s competition began the following year, with quad and junior events introduced in 1998 and 2000, respectively.

The USTA was officially designated by the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee as the national governing body for the Paralympic sport of wheelchair tennis in June 2002, becoming the first Olympic national governing body to earn this recognition. As the national governing body for wheelchair tennis, the USTA manages wheelchair tennis in the United States, including the sanctioning of tournaments, overseeing wheelchair rankings, creating and managing a high-performance program for developing elite disabled athletes, and selecting teams to compete internationally for the United States.

 
 

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About Rhiannon Potkey

Rhiannon Potkey is a veteran sportswriter with more than two decades of experience in journalism. Potkey has covered many sports at many levels and has a passion for finding great stories. Potkey has covered the U.S. Open, junior sectional and national events, college conference championships and Davis Cup matches. Potkey is currently Content Strategist for Tennis Recruiting. You can reach Rhiannon by email at [email protected].
 
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Page updated on Wednesday, May 15, 2024
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