Wild Card Guidelines

Wild cards are available for junior and professional players to compete in various USTA Jr National Events, International Tennis Federation (ITF) Junior events and and USTA/ITF Pro Circuit tournaments. Wild cards are awarded to players who are unable to get into a particular event on thier own ranking.
The number of wild cards that are available in each draw varies at each event and is determined by the ITF for ITF Junior and Pro Circuit event and by the USTA for USTA events. Below we have listed the description of the various types of wild cards available and information on how to apply for them:

ITF Junior Tournament Wild Cards

There are two types Wild Cards for ITF Junior Tournaments which players may apply for: those that are decided by the USTA and those that are decided by the Tournament Director.

ITF Junior Tournament Wild Cards Decided by USTA - Applications for ITF Junior Tournament wild cards decided by the USTA must be submitted online at the link below. E-mailed or faxed wild card requests will not be accepted. These wild cards are only for ITF junior tournaments held within the United States. The number of wild cards available varies from tournament to tournament. Wild cards are decided by the USTA Junior Competition Department in consultation with the Heads of Men's & Women’s Tennis. Only those players selected to receive wild cards will be notified.
Deadline: No later than 5 days after the tournament entry deadline.
Contact: Mason Mayborg
Online Application (Make sure to select ITF Tournament under Tournament Type)
ITF Junior Tournament Wild Cards Decided by Tournament Director - Since some of the wild card are not controlled by the USTA, players may also contact the ITF tournament director.  Both the availability and number of tournament director-decided wild cards varies from tournament to tournament.  Contact the ITF tournament director to learn whether wild cards are available and how to apply.

USA Pro Circuit Wild Cards

Applications for USTA Pro Circuit wild cards must be submitted online by using the Online Wild Card Request Form below. These wild cards are determined by the Heads of Men’s & Women’s Tennis and are only for USTA Pro Circuit Events held within the United States. Only those players selected to receive wild cards will be notified. Players may also contact the individual tournament directors regarding the local wild cards for their individual events. In addition, some of the USTA Pro Circuit Wild Cards are awarded based on results at USTA National Championships.

Deadline: 2 weeks prior to start of tournament

USTA National Championship Wild Cards

Wild cards are available for all age divisions of USTA National Championships.  

Note the Wild Card Selection Criteria as provided in the 2018 Junior National Tournament Ranking and Sanctioning Regulations

The Wild Card Committee shall use the following criteria to select wild cards:

  • No player that is under suspension by the USTA, a Sectional Association, the ITF, the ITA, the WTA, or the ATP may be awarded a wild card.
  • No player who has a national standing below the standing of the first alternate may be awarded a wild card unless, in the opinion of the Wild Card Committee, the player will improve the overall strength of field of the tournament.
  • No player who submits a late wild card application may be considered. Timely entries into the tournament are recommended, but are not required. 
  • A player with an established record in international, professional, or collegiate competition may be considered. 
  • A player whose ability to qualify has been affected by injury, illness, or other personal circumstance may be considered. 
  • A player with a high standing in a younger age division of the event may be considered. 
  • A player with a high standing in the division of the event who was not endorsed by their Sectional Association may be considered, provided that the player has been recommended for a wild card by their Sectional Association. 
  • A player who has been recommended for a wild card by the USTA National Coaching Staff may be considered.
  • USTA Player Development may hold an invitational wild card playoff competition to which the winner shall be awarded a wild card, provided that the Junior Competition Committee has approved the competition in advance.
  • In 2018, the USTA may hold a wild card playoff tournament to select one wild card for The USTA National Championships in each of the Boys’ and Girls’ 18 Divisions.

Deadline: No later than 5 days after tournament entry deadline (Tuesday at 5:00 p.m. EST)

Contact: Mason Mayborg (
National Junior Wild Card Request Form (Click Here and select National Jr)

Merit-Based Wild Cards

For 2018:

For top finishers at Easter Bowl ITF (BG 18) & USTA National Championships, the following is a list of tournaments that have been allocated wild cards based on the results of top finishers. These events may have other Wild Cards available to top finishers that have been obtained by the tournament directors.  Players who earn these wild cards should contact the Player Services department.


For 2019:

In preparation for the 2019 Competitive Pathway Restructure (ATP / WTA / ITF), which goes into effect on December 31, 2018, the USTA has undertaken an integrated and deliberate process to develop a formal system of wild card linkages in order to create developmental and progression opportunities for our best American* players.

The wild card linkages were designed for four types of American players: High Performance Juniors, Transition Pros, Collegiate players and adult players (late-maturers). The specific linkages were determined by
benchmarking historical performance in our premiere American events (USTA and Collegiate) against the current average level in Transition Tour and Pro Circuit events.

Throughout 2019, as new playing patterns emerge, the USTA will be engaging in third party data collection and analysis throughout the year to help us to identify areas where linkages need to be adjusted, in order to optimize in 2020.

*All wild cards awarded in this system will be given to American players only.

2019 Competitive Pathway Merit-Based Wild Cards