Photo: Mara Chaplin|
This week, Canada will be competing for the biggest team title in wheelchair tennis, the BNP Paribas World Team Cup (WTC). Considered to be the Davis Cup and Fed Cup of wheelchair tennis, the tournament will see 23 nations play across four different categories (men’s, women’s, quad, and junior) from May 13 to 18 in Tel Aviv, Israel.
The nation will be sending the same squad as last year to compete in the quad division. The Canadian team will be led by Rob Shaw, who is coming off a career year in 2018. Currently ranked no. 10 in the quad rankings, the North Bay, Ontario native is on the road to qualify for Tokyo 2020. Just last week, he won the title at the Israel Open.
He will be joined by team veteran Gary Luker who has now been nominated 11 times as well as Mitch McIntyre, who is set to compete for just the second time. The Canadian squad will be once again captained by Christian Gingras.
“We are really looking forward to this week’s competition. Our team has been hard at work preparing to face-off against the best nations in the world. We are going into the event with a lot of confidence and our ultimate goal is to qualify for next year’s event,” said Janet Petras, Director of Wheelchair tennis at Tennis Canada.
The team is looking to better their recent Top 6 finishes by moving into the Top 5 this year, which would secure their direct entry into the 2020 World Team Cup. Canada will be competing in Pool 1, alongside Great Britain and South Africa, ranked no. 2 and 4 respectively. For their part, the Canadian team is ranked sixth.
*Feature photo: Mara Chaplin