Launched in 2005, the ITF Development Team assists players from developing countries to receive training and play tournaments that otherwise would not have been possible for them.
Members of the team compete in a tournament on the UNIQLO Wheelchair Tennis Tour so as to offer competitive opportunities as part of the training.
Players selected to be part of the ITF Development Team in the past have included Johana Martinez (COL), Robinson Mendez (CHI), Guangzhi Wang (CHN) and 2008 Paralympic Athletes Kemal Okur (TUR), Crina Tugui (ROU) and Kgothatso Montjane (RSA).
Johana Martinez said: "I am very, very happy. This is a fantastic opportunity for me to improve and train with many of the world’s top players... [The coach] is a very special person, a great coach and takes care of everything for the team. This is unbelievable for me as I never thought I could play wheelchair tennis." This sentiment is one shared by all participants of the Development Team.
ITF Wheelchair Tennis Manager Mark Bullock said: "It is so exciting to see these players training in such a fantastic environment. All the players are very motivated and are making the most of this opportunity. I am certain that on their return to their home countries they will be able to share their experiences and it will motivate many more players."