Cordoba, Spain, 6 November 2023 |

Three of the nation’s top junior tennis players will represent Australia at the 2023 Junior Billie Jean King Cup Finals in Spain this week.

Queensland talents Emerson Jones and Tahlia Kokkinis, along with Victoria’s Koharu Nishikawa, will don the green and gold as they represent their country with pride in this prestigious international team competition for girls aged 16 and under.

The 15-year-old Jones recently broke into the world’s top 10 in the junior rankings, becoming only the third Aussie girl to achieve the feat since the introduction of the current ranking system in 2004.

Olivia Rich is accompanying the team as captain.

Australia is one of 16 nations to qualify for the finals, which will be played in Cordoba from 6-12 November.

“The girls have been training hard in preparation for our first tie against Canada,” Rich said.

“It’s such an incredible experience and privilege for them to represent the country and compete against the world’s best junior players.

“The team is ready to showcase their fighting Aussie spirit!”

Teams compete in round-robin ties for the first three days of the competition, with the top-two nations in each group then progressing to the knockout stage.

The Australian team has a rest day scheduled for Thursday and will travel to the Spanish city of Seville to support Australia’s Billie Jean King Cup, who are scheduled to face Kazakhstan in a round-robin tie.

> READ: Birrell – “It’s such a privilege and honour to represent Australia again”

The USA are the reigning Junior Billie Jean King Cup champions, having defeated the Czech Republic with a dominant 3-0 win at the final in Antalya, Turkey in 2022. The Americans have won the title in four of the past five years.

Team Australia will be looking to emulate the success of our 2011 team, which was the last time that Australia claimed the title.

Previous winning teams at the finals have featured the likes of Ash Barty (Australia, 2011), Iga Swiatek (Poland, 2016) and Coco Gauff (USA, 2018), underlining the importance of the event in terms of player development.

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