Belgium is one of eight seeded teams for the draw on Wednesday at 2.00 P.M. for the new-formula Fed Cup, whose final phase will take place on 14 to 19 April 2020 in Budapest.
The International Tennis Federation (ITF) announced last week that the Czech Republic, eleven-time winner of the Cup and World No. 1 in the team rankings since 2014, had been given a pass for the final twelve-nation phase.
Fed Cup is the premier international team competition in women’s tennis, launched in 1963 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the International Tennis Federation. Other automatic qualifiers are Australia and France, finalists at the last classic edition of the cup, on 9 to 10 November in Perth, Australia, and host-country Hungary.
Each of the other eight slots will be filled based on a qualifying match on 7 to 8 February in 2020.
John Van Herck’s Belgium already knows it will play at home against one of the eight unseeded countries: the Netherlands, number 19 in the ITF ranking, and authorised to take part in the qualifiers as a result of the Czech wild card, Lithuania (ITF 12), Canada (ITF 13), Japan (ITF 14), Slovakia (ITF 15), Russia (ITF 16), Kazakhstan (ITF 17) and Brazil (ITF 18).
The other seven seeded countries are the United States (ITF 2), Belarus (ITF 5), Romania (ITF 6), Germany (ITF 7), Spain (ITF 8), Switzerland (ITF 9) and Britain (ITF 11).
The seeds were determined based on the ITF country rankings of 22 April last. Like the Davis Cup, the new Fed Cup formula is comprised of a six-day final phase involving 12 countries, which will be organised in Budapest until 2022. This replaces the classic one-match final.
The Brussels Times