SA lose Hopman Cup place
South Africa has lost its place in tennis's popular eight-team Hopman Cup, the International Tennis Federation (ITF) confirmed on Friday.
When the teams for the mixed tennis tournament, to be held in Perth from December 28 to January 4, were released by the ITF, the names of Kevin Anderson and Chanelle Scheepers, who participated in the 2013 event, were absent.
The participating teams, which included seven of the top 20 men's and women's players in the world, were Poland, US, France, Canada, Czech Republic, Italy, Australia and Spain.
While not officially representing their countries through selection by their national associations, the teams were chosen primarily by the tournament organisers as the best available based on respective men's and women's world rankings.
South Africa would appear to have lost out through the decline in world rankings of Scheepers, who dropped from a commendable 37th to 82nd over the past 12 months.
Anderson, in turn, improved his ranking marginally to 20th in the world over the same period, despite an alarming slump in form over the last two months in which he has lost six of his seven ATP tournament matches.
Current holders of the cup, in which matches between countries consist of a men's singles, a women's singles and a mixed doubles, were Fernando Verdasco and Medina Garringues of Spain.