Mary Hare got her idea for the form of the tournament from what is known as "county week" in England, an annual event in which players from all the English counties compete fiercely against one another in teams. A contest like the Davis Cup seemed not only impractical financially and otherwise but hardly as much fun, so the proposal to extend the Wightman Cup along county week lines was put forward. To get it going Mary Hare was required to write something like 100 letters to the various associations affiliated with the International Lawn Tennis Federation and to a number of prominent tennis patrons. "We had to be very careful, as a young group trying to push another competition," Mary remembers, but she need not have worried—hardly anybody opposed the idea, although many thought it would not come off. Hazel Wightman herself lent weighty support to the proposal.
That Federation Cup competition will eventually overshadow the Wightman Cup competition seems almost a certainty, particularly in view of the enthusiasm it already has engendered. If this seems a little sad to traditionalists it is at the same time proof of a growing world. "I don't think it wise that women, bless 'em, should try to copy the male pattern," one British gentleman wrote Mary Hare, comparing her plan to the Davis Cup. "They often have better ideas."