United Cup trophy comes to Gosford

Luka Lazic admires the Cup

Budding tennis champions on the Central Coast were given the chance this week to get up close and personal with the United Cup trophy when it visited Gosford ahead of the beginning of the tournament.

Showcasing equality at the highest level of the sport, the United Cup will swing into action across Sydney and Perth from December 29 to January 7.

Young players at Gosford Tennis Club jumped at the chance on December 4 to have their photo taken with the cup, which also visited Nelson Bay and Newcastle in the lead-up to the competition.

A spokesperson said Gosford Tennis Club was thrilled to host the prestigious event for Tennis NSW.

“We are consistently working towards bringing a diverse range of national and high-profile events to the club, for the Central Coast community,” the spokesperson said.

“Hosting TNSW with the United Cup National Tour was a nod to our local community, and highlights the deep-seated passion Aussies have for tennis, and how much a love of sport and camaraderie has shaped so much of our culture.

“This event served as a fantastic source of inspiration, especially for our Club Juniors, and we hope for the local community too.

“It was a fantastic way to launch our own Summer of Tennis Events Program, where Gosford Tennis Club will be showcased as a Premier Live Viewing Location for the Australian Open on the Central Coast.

“An event for all, with large inflatable screens and comfortable blow-up couches set up on the court for viewing all the major AO matches.

“Our newly inaugurated club bar, Dropshots, will extend its opening hours and offer up a few sneaky signature cocktails, along with the full range from our local sponsors at Six Strings Brewery.

“Adding to the experience, we will be showcasing food from a few local suppliers, and entertainment for the kids, making it an exciting new event venue for the Central Coast.

“We look forward to welcoming everyone to the courts.”

The United Cup will launch the 2024 Australian Summer of Tennis, and will feature mixed gender teams from 18 countries, all vying to win the prestigious United Cup for their country.

The playing field will feature five of the world’s top 10 women in singles – Iga Swiatek (Poland), Jessica Pegula (USA), Maria Sakkari (Greece), Marketa Vondrousova (Czech Republic) and Caroline Garcia (France).

It will also feature nine of the world’s top 20 men in singles – Novak Djokovic (Serbia), Stefanos Tsitsipas (Greece), Casper Ruud (Norway), Alexander Zverev (Germany), Taylor Fritz (USA), Hubert Hurkacz (Poland), Alex de Minaur (Australia), Felix Auger-Aliassime (Canada) and Cameron Norrie (Great Britain).

The star-studded international hard court tennis tournament will be played at Ken Rosewall Arena, Sydney Olympic Park and RAC Arena in Perth.

Each city will host nine countries in three groups set to compete in a round-robin format.

Group winners in each city will advance to the quarter-finals, with one quarter-final spot in each city awarded to the best runner-up in that city.

Winners will progress to the semi-finals and finals in Sydney on Saturday and Sunday, January 6 and 7.