|ITF/GSDF Touring Teams|
Each year, based on performances at regional junior circuits, talented players from less developed tennis nations are selected to join ITF/Grand Slam® touring teams to play higher-level events outside their region, with the ITF coach and expenses during the tour financed by the ITF/Grand Slam® Programme. The ITF/Grand Slam® Touring team programme is probably the ITF’s most well known development initiative and its success can be measured by the fact that between 1999 and 2005 at least one junior Grand Slam title has been won by a member of an ITF/Grand Slam® Touring team every year. Former Junior Grand Slam champions include Finland’s Jarkko Nieminen (US Open 1999), Indonesia’s Angelique Widjaja (Wimbledon 2001 and Roland Garros 2002), Romanian Florin Mergea (Wimbledon 2003), Ukraine’s Kateryna Bondarenko (Wimbledon 2004), and Bahamian Ryan Sweeting (US Open 2005).
|Ons Jabeur (TUN), member of the ITF/Grand Slam African 14 & Under Touring Team in 2008 went onto win the girls' title at Roland Garros 2011|
|Ricardas Berankis (LTU) member of the ITF/GSDF Touring Team to North America when he won the 2007 US Open, with ITF/GSDF team coach Frank Zlesak|
|Florin Mergea (ROM) - 2003 Wimbledon Boys Singles and Doubles Champion and a member of the ITF Junior A Team to Europe|
The ITF organises international teams as well as regional teams from Africa, Asia, Caribbean / Central America, Pacific Oceania, Eastern Europe and South America. Criteria for the selection of players to teams include the player’s results in international events and the age of the player (preference is given to younger players). The work rate, attitude and discipline record of the player is also taken into account and the ITF Development Officers and Directors of Regional Training Centres have input prior to the final selection of players.
The ITF/Grand Slam® touring team programme is an integral part of the development programme and aims to facilitate the transition of talented players through regional and international junior competitions and where possible on to the professional ranks.
In 2011, there were 22 ITF/Grand Slam® Touring Teams involving 168 players from 76 different countries.
Former ITF/Grand Slam® Touring Team members include: Gustavo Kuerten (Brazil), Nicolas Massu (Chile), Nicolas Lapentti (Ecuador), Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupathi (India), Angelique Widjaja (Indonesia), Eleni Daniilidou (Greece), Younes El Aynaoui (Morocco), Paradorn Srichaphan (Thailand), Cara Black (Zimbabwe), Jarkko Nieminen (Finland), Florin Mergea (Romania), Marcos Baghdatis (Cyprus), Kateryna Bondarenko (Ukraine), Viktoria Azarenka (Belarus), Uladzimir Ignatik (Belarus) and Ricardas Berankis (Lithuania).
Please refer to the PDF documents below for the full list of players who participated in ITF/Grand Slam® touring teams between 2004 and 2011.
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