Voting opens for 2017 Fed Cup Heart Awards
(March 24, 2017) The ITF announced a shortlist of ten players to receive the first four Fed Cup Heart Awards of 2017. Awards will be presented in four categories based on performances in the Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group and World Group II first round ties, and the three Zone Group I events at the beginning of February.
Aryna Sabalenka (BLR), Karolina Pliskova (CZE), Rebecca Sramkova (SVK) and Timea Bacsinszky (SUI) have all been shortlisted for the World Group/World Group II award. Ivana Jorovic (SRB) and Heather Watson (GBR) have been shortlisted for Europe/Africa; Bianca Andreescu (CAN) and Montserrat Gonzalez (PAR) for Americas; and Galina Voskoboeva (KAZ) and Naomi Osaka (JPN) for Asia/Oceania.
The players were shortlisted by the Heart Award judging panel, consisting of ITF President David Haggerty and a mixture of former players and members of the international media. A public vote, running on 24-30 March, is being held on FedCup.com and FedCup.com/es to decide the four winners, who will all receive a cheque to be donated to their chosen charity. The winners will be announced on 3 April.
ITF President David Haggerty said: “The Fed Cup Heart Award is a fantastic initiative that recognises outstanding contributions made by players representing their country. I would like to acknowledge the performances by the ten shortlisted players but I would also like to thank all of the players who make Fed Cup by BNP Paribas the success it is today.”
The Fed Cup Heart Award is an ITF initiative that was first presented to USA’s Melanie Oudin at the 2009 Fed Cup Final. It aims to recognise players who have represented their country with distinction, shown exceptional courage on court and demonstrated outstanding commitment to their team. A total of six players will be recognised in 2017. To cast your vote, visit the Fed Cup website
Fed Cup by BNP Paribas is the World Cup of Tennis. It is the largest annual international team competition in women’s sport, with 107 nations entered in 2017. The competition is 54 years old having been founded in 1963.
World Group / World Group II
Aryna Sabalenka (BLR)
In her first live Fed Cup rubbers, suffered a three-set defeat on Saturday but won on Sunday to send Belarus into the Fed Cup semifinals for the first time.
Karolina Pliskova (CZE)
Won both singles rubbers, including a 62 62 win over world No. 7 Garbiñe Muguruza. Maintained her record of never having lost a Fed Cup tie.
Rebecca Sramkova (SVK)
On her Fed Cup debut, recorded two singles wins including the one that sealed the tie, as Slovakia defeated Italy to reach the World Group play-offs.
Timea Bacsinszky (SUI)
Won three rubbers as Switzerland defeated France to reach the Fed Cup semifinals for the second successive year.
Europe/Africa Zone Group I
Ivana Jorovic (SRB)
Won all four of her singles rubbers and two deciding doubles rubbers, including one in the promotional play-off, as Serbia qualified for the World Group II play-offs.
Heather Watson (GBR)
Won four singles rubbers and stepped in for the crucial doubles rubber in the promotional play-off against Croatia as Great Britain reached the World Group II play-offs.
Americas Zone Group I
Bianca Andreescu (CAN)
Making her Fed Cup debut, the 16-year-old won all four singles rubbers without dropping a set. She also won two doubles rubbers as Canada advanced to the World Group II play-offs.
Montserrat Gonzalez (PAR)
Won four of the six ties she contested as Paraguay earned a third-place finish in Americas Zone Group I.
Asia/Oceania Zone Group I
Naomi Osaka (JPN)
On her Fed Cup debut, won all four singles rubbers as Japan reached the promotional play-off tie.
Galina Voskoboeva (KAZ)
Won four of the five rubbers she contested, including the decisive doubles rubber in the promotional play-off as Kazakhstan advanced to the World Group II play-offs.
VALUE OF CHEQUES
$10,000 World Group semifinals winner (x1)
$6,000 World Group / World Group II first round winner (x1)
$3,000 World Group / World Group II play-offs
$1,000 Zone Group I winners (x3)
David Haggerty (USA), ITF President
Sabine Appelmans (BEL), former Fed Cup player/captain
Mercedes Paz (ARG), former Fed Cup player
Craig Gabriel (AUS), international journalist
Sandra Harwitt (USA), international journalist
Corinne Dubreuil (FRA), international photographer
Ray Giubilo (ITA), international photographer