Saudi Arabia entered a female team for the first time at an International Tennis Federation (ITF) tournament. The team made it to the Asia/Oceania pre-qualifying event for the Billie Jean King Cup Juniors in Sri Lanka on February 22.
Saudi Arabia and Brunei made their Billie Jean King Cup Juniors debuts in the tournament, for players 16 years and under, that determined the qualifying teams for the main junior event to be decided later this year.
Areej Farah, captain of the four-player Saudi team, described her team’s entry to the event as an amazing experience that is so empowering. Saudi Arabian player Dania Alzuhair said her team’s appearance is “groundbreaking.” “Saudi Arabia has a goal of expanding the number of women in sports, and being a part of that just makes us feel so lucky,” Alzuhair said.
The year 2023 is when the Billie Jean King Cup by Gainbridge celebrates 60 years. The competition’s growth continues to accelerate at a rapid pace with a host of records shattered last season. The United States won the Billie Jean Cup Juniors 2022 title for the seventh time in November in the final of the 16-team tournament at Antalya, Turkey, beating defending champion Czech Republic.