Davis Cup Preview: Djokovic Rips Belgian Clay Court; Tsonga, Raonic, Isner In Action This Weekend
by Staff | January 31st, 2013, 9:38 pm
  • 81 Comments

The first round of Davis Cup play in 2013 kicks off this weekend with eight World Group ties. Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal are both absent but World No. 1 Novak Djokovic will lead his Serbian team into Belgium tomorrow and the Australian Open champion and his teammates aren’t pleased with the home team’s clay surface in Chaleroi.

“This is definitely the worst court we have ever played on,” Djokovic told Reuters Thursday. “We’re all putting our health at stake here.

“How is it possible that a clay court can be solid and can be a successful, playable court if it’s built on parquet? We tried to slide a few times, but our feet stayed under ground.”

Following his fourth Australian Open title, Djokovic traveled home to Monte Carlo before arriving in Belgium on Wednesday.

“It’s been a long few weeks in Melbourne and exhausting but still very successful,” said Djokovic. “Right now I am turning my attention to Davis Cup and I am glad I am part of this team again. I have missed that feeling to be honest and hopefully we can have a successful team.”

Top ranked Spain is without their warhorses Nadal, David Ferrer, Nicolas Almagro and Fernando Verdasco for their tie against Canada in Vancouver. The Canadians now have high hopes with anchor Milos Raonic and Vasek Pospisil and are favored to pull the upset.

“It’s a great opportunity to be playing in Canada. If this were in Spain we know that it would be a much more challenging,” Canadian captain Martin Laurendeau said. “This will undoubtedly be very difficult, but we feel good about playing any country here at home. We have a great crowd here, we have guys who are healthy and are keen to be playing. Our objective as a group is to make it past the first round and we intend to do that with the group we have here.”

In Jacksonville, Florida, team USA will be heavily favored against the visiting Brazilians. John Isner has been a question mark all week but after missing the Australian Open with a knee injury the 6-foot-10 giant says he’s okay to play.

“I had a very encouraging week of practice, which was what I was looking for,” Isner said. “I wasn’t sure how my knee was going to react when I really started practicing hard because it’s been a while. Practice has gone well and that was the main decision for us and my knee really hasn’t bothered me. So I feel like I’m ready to go and these guys feel like I’m ready to go as well.”

Other stars playing this weekend includ Richard Gasquet and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga for France, David Nalbandian is scheduled to return for Argentina and Tomas Berdych will lead his Czech team in their title defense against Stan Wawrinka and Switzerland.

In the zonal competitions Alexandr Dolgopolov, Grigor Dimitrov, Lleyton Hewitt, Leander Paes, Jerzy Janowicz, Martin Klizan all are expected to play for their respective countries.

Notes:

Last year’s champions Czech Republic begin the defence of their title with an away tie against Switzerland. Czech Republic are looking to establish a record for their nation by winning their sixth straight tie while Switzerland are bidding to reach the World Group quarterfinals for the first time since 2004.

Canada are bidding to win their first World Group tie this weekend. The Canadians face a difficult task at home to last year’s finalists Spain, who are looking to reach the World Group quarterfinals for the sixth consecutive year.

Croatia face their fourth straight tie away from home as they travel to Turin this weekend to take on Italy. The last time Italy advanced beyond the first round of the competition was in 1998 when they finished runner-up.

Belgium will be hoping to extend their 1-0 winning head-to-head record when they take on Serbia in Charleroi. Serbia, the 2010 champions, are aiming for a place in the World Group quarterfinals for the fourth straight time.

Brazil are back in the World Group for the first time since 2003 and will play USA in Jacksonville, Florida, for a place in the last eight. USA, who reached the World Group semifinals in 2012, hold a 3-1 lead in previous meetings against the South American nation.

France host Israel, who are back in the elite 16 nation pool after two years in Zone Group action, under new captain Arnaud Clement. Clement will be hoping his nation can maintain their perfect record against the Israelis, having won all three of their previous ties.

Argentina host Germany in Buenos Aires in a rematch of the 2012 World Group first round tie. Since returning to the World Group in 2002, Argentina have always progressed to at least the quarterfinals.

Austria will be looking to reproduce the kind of form that saw them reach the quarterfinals last year for the first time since 1995 when they travel to Astana to face Kazakhstan.

Since the World Group was introduced in 1981, at least one unseeded nation has always reached the quarterfinals with a record four doing so in 1987 and 2005. This is the 33rd year of the World Group.

Canada v Spain (s) – Vancouver, CAN – hard (indoors)
Friday
R1: Milos Raonic (CAN) v Albert Ramos (ESP)
R2: Frank Dancevic (CAN) v Marcel Granollers (ESP)
Saturday
R3: Daniel Nestor/Vasek Pospisil (CAN) v Marcel Granollers/Marc Lopez (ESP)
Sunday
R4: Milos Raonic (CAN) v Marcel Granollers (ESP)
R5: Frank Dancevic (CAN) v Albert Ramos (ESP)

Italy v Croatia (s) – Turin, ITA – clay (indoors)
Friday
R1: Fabio Fognini (ITA) v Marin Cilic (CRO)
R2: Andreas Seppi (ITA) v Ivan Dodig (CRO)
Saturday
R3: Simone Bolelli (ITA) & Paolo Lorenzi (ITA) v Mate Pavic (CRO) & Nikola Mektic (CRO)
Sunday
R4: Andres Seppi (ITA) v Marin Cilic (CRO)
R5: Fabio Fognini (ITA) v Ivan Dodig (CRO)

Belgium v Serbia (s) – Charleroi, BEL – clay (indoors)
Friday
R1: David Goffin (BEL) v Victor Troicki (SRB)
R2: Olivier Rochus (BEL) v Novak Djokovic (SRB)
Saturday
R3: Ruben Bemelmans/Steve Darcis (BEL) v Nenad Zimonjic/Victor Troicki (SRB)
Sunday
R4: David Goffin (BEL) v Novak Djokovic (SRB)
R5: Olivier Rochus (BEL) v Victor Troicki (SRB)

(s) USA v Brazil – Jacksonville, FL, USA – hard (indoors)
Friday
R1: Sam Querrey (USA) v Thomaz Bellucci (BRA)
R2: John Isner (USA) v Thiago Alves (BRA)
Saturday
R3: Bob Bryan/ Mike Bryan (USA) v Marcelo Melo/ Bruno Soares (BRA)
Sunday
R4: John Isner (USA) v Thomaz Bellucci (BRA)
R5: Sam Querrey (USA) v Thiago Alves (BRA)

(s) France v Israel – Rouen, FRA – hard (indoors)
Friday
R1: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA) v Amir Weintraub (ISR)
R2: Richard Gasquet (FRA) v Dudi Sela (ISR)
Saturday
R3: Julien Benneteau/Michael Llodra (FRA) v Jonathan Erlich/Dudi Sela (ISR)
Sunday
R4: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA) v Dudi Sela (ISR)
R5: Richard Gasquet (FRA) v Amir Weintraub (ISR)

(s) Argentina v Germany – Buenos Aires, ARG – clay (outdoors)
Friday
R1: Carlos Berlocq (ARG) v Philipp Kohlschreiber (GER)
R2: Juan Monaco (ARG) v Florian Mayer (GER)
Saturday
R3: David Nalbandian/Horacio Zeballos (ARG) v Christopher Kas/Philipp Kohlschreiber (GER)
Sunday
R4: Juan Monaco (ARG) v Philipp Kohlschreiber (GER)
R5: Carlos Berlocq (ARG) v Florian Mayer (GER)

(s) Kazakhstan v Austria – Astana, KAZ – clay (indoors)
Friday
R1: Andrey Golubev (KAZ) v Andreas Haider-Maurer (AUT)
R2: Evgeny Korolev (KAZ) v Jurgen Melzer (AUT)
Saturday
R3: Yuriy Shukin/Andrey Golubev (KAZ) v Alexander Peya/Julian Knowle (AUT)
Sunday
R4: Andrey Golubev (KAZ) v Jurgen Melzer (AUT)
R5: Evgeny Korolev (KAZ) v Andreas Haider-Maurer (AUT)

Switzerland v (s) Czech Republic – Geneva, SUI – hard (indoors)
Friday
R1: Stanislas Wawrinka (SUI) v Lukas Rosol (CZE)
R2: Henri Laaksonen (SUI) v Tomas Berdych (CZE)
Saturday
R3: Marcos Chiudinelli/Stanislas Wawrinka (SUI) v Tomas Berdych/Ivo Minar (CZE)
Sunday
R4: Stanislas Wawrinka (SUI) v Tomas Berdych (CZE)
R5: Henri Laaksonen (SUI) v Lukas Rosol (CZE)


Also Check Out:
John Isner, The Most Destructive Force In Tennis, Leads USA To Another Improbable Davis Cup Victory
Tsonga, Del Potro In Action Tuesday At Monte Carclo; Houston Champ Isner Gets Gulbis
Federer Tries To Stop The Rot; Roddick, Raonic Return From Injury In San Jose
Federer Stars This Weekend As Davis Cup Begins
Davis Cup QF Preview: Can Isner Fray The French Nerves? Will Spain, Serbia Prevail Without Nadal, Djokovic?

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81 Comments for Davis Cup Preview: Djokovic Rips Belgian Clay Court; Tsonga, Raonic, Isner In Action This Weekend

Humble Rafa Says:

His Kingness is resting after playing 6 matches in the new year and Henri Laaksonen is representing the Red Cross Country. Not Nice.

Marcos Chiudinelli aka Injury Trainwreck is not good enough to play singles. Ouch.


roy Says:

i’m sure roger is really looking forward to davis cup, seeing how much he loves being with the team and representing the swiss and supporting his best mate stan…and the tie being at home too, that must be exciting, playing in front of his home crowd, how he loves that, and convenient too, not having to travel too far from home, hardly playing any matches this year so far… and they’ll certainly need him of course, given czechs are pretty strong…he must really be looking forward to it.

just like berdych, and tsonga, and djoker – flying straight to davis cup from the oz win, cause it’s a tricky tie with troicki nolonger streaking and goffin in the mix…and hewitt who’s playing in the minor division! showing that same love of nation and team and leadership as the GOAT, perhaps it rubbed off from roger even …

yeah i’m sure roger, that amazing role model, that amazing sportsman, the guy who just loves playing davis cup and who always likes to be there when his team needs him, like a 1st round against last year’s champs, i’m sure he can’t wait to play this tie and be back in those press conferences with stan, blaming his best mate for poor performances and such.

roger federer, such an ambassador. never hanging wawrinka out to dry, never putting his own convenience about his beloved team mates. roger federer, the man who coined the phrase, there’s no F in team.


skeezer Says:

Lets see, roger, who has a wife and 2 kids, not a selfish man in that regard, doesn’t play DC this rd. He is a Father. He decides maybe to spend time with his family, of which, most guys on tour don’t have one. I’d say he doesn’t have to answer to idiotic posts that question the mans intregrity towards the game.


Giles Says:

skeezer. To be honest Fed’s absence is going to cost them the tie. Wawa is there fighting on his own- the may as well give up. With Fed’s presence I think they would have pretty much clinched the win. No wily Stepanek this time. #JustSaying


RZ Says:

Too bad Roger isn’t playing. I’d love to see the Czechs go down in the first round.


RZ Says:

^ That’s really aimed at Berdych (can’t stand him). I have nothing against the rest of the Czechs.


Giles Says:

^^ Does anybody like him? I don’t! Lol


Sirius Says:

“I’d say he doesn’t have to answer to idiotic posts that question the mans intregrity towards the game.”

well said!


grendel Says:

Skeezer – off topic for a mo. I was wondering – how did you get on with the old Song of Ice and Fire? Are you up to date now?


Alok Says:

Fed has played more DC ties than any of the top 4. The British DC team has not had much participation by its top player. And, the Spain DC team top player, Nadal only plays home ties. Djokovic after getting the DC medal, was absent last year, and was not scheduled to play since winning the medal. He would not have played had Tisps not pulled out due to injury.

I think before throwing stones at Fed, The DC participation of the top 4 should be checked for attendance.


Alok Says:

Fed has never played a tie and bailed out due to a cold. DC has been used by some only to appear t the last tie so that they could collect a medal. Others have refused to play, period. Ask GBR.


joe Says:

nole rips the court then he rips rochus.


Gordo Says:

Roy – I bet you tell the shaggy dog story – the one where one rambles forever on the same thing and that’s what makes it funny – but the difference between that and your rant on Fed is you are attempting sarcasm (why I don’t know) and sarcasm should be quick.

Or maybe like many in here you just like to see your name above boring rambles.


Wog boy Says:

Wrong, how do you now Nole wasn’t scheduled to play? In his schedule for this year that was published in December Nole was scheduled to play in Belgium, check your facts before posting. We were hoping he wouldn’t have to play but he would be there with his mates in Belgium and considering Troicki cannot be trusted with his game Nole, most probably, would have to play at least one match even if Tipsy was there.

Why do you bring Nole in conversation when none of his fans was saying anything about your man? You just wanted to have a dig at him? The prove how keen he was to play for Serbia is that he cought plane out of Australia literary after he had shower after winning AO at 4am. He asked and he got permission from organisers to leave the country before traditional monday picture shooting for AO chapms. I don’t remember that happened before in Melbourne.


Wog boy Says:

should say “know” and not “now”


mat4 Says:

Hi, WB.

Didn’t see Novak play, but read the Belgium press. It seems he served quite well.


Wog boy Says:

Hi mat4,

Haven’t seen it either, read the Serbian press (RTS) and they say he played clinical tennis on that “clay.” That was big efortt considering he arrived in Europe four days ago, transition from HC to clay etc. it usually takes three to five days to get back to normal sleep pattern after flying from Aussieland to Europe. For me it is at least five days. I keep waking up in the middle of the night, I mean fully awake, and the falling asleep for no reason aroun 10-11am. The only person that was happy with me waking up 2-3am was my mother. The moment I walk out of my room to make a coffee she would walk out of her to be with me and talk since she wouldn’t have a chance during a day, I was either out or it was to many people in the house and she hasn’t seen me for more than 10 years and it is a questio whether she is going to see me again, she old fragile lady. I feel bad now after realising why she was waking up so early just to be with me, I always get to understan thing when it is too late.


Wog boy Says:

Too many typos, I hope you know what I meant.


mat4 Says:

@WB:

“I always get to understan thing when it is too late.”

Don’t worry, you’re not the only one. I feel that I am late about 15 years, at least. Not to mention the things I never understood.

I always feel that I am still a little boy playing on the beach… the body grows old, but the soul remains forever – not young, not really – but just immature.

But with the years that pass, the only things that remains is the “bitter taste of experience”, to quote one of your novelists.


Alok Says:

@Gordo: Or maybe like many in here you just like to see your name above boring rambles.

February 1st, 2013 at 6:44 pm

Well said, the boring rambles just go on and on totally unrelated to tennis.


Wog boy Says:

“bitter taste of experience” couldn’t say it better, I wander who said that?


Wog boy Says:

Don’t read them … boring rambles.


mat4 Says:

@WB:

Let it be a little quiz. His second wife and translator was French (Pascale Delpeche, she works now in Belgrade), he died in Paris in 1989, and his real name is Daniel Cohn.

The quotation should be: “dreg, residue” instead of “taste”.


mat4 Says:

Delpech, sorry…


Wog boy Says:

Is it Danilo Kiš?


mat4 Says:

In one of my short stories, I misquoted his most famous sentence:

… that the temporary suffering of existence [lasting?] is more valuable than the final void of nothingness.


mat4 Says:

Yes, WB, it is.


Wog boy Says:

The reason why he was such a great thinker is because he grew up with few cultures from different civilisatons in himself IMO. Same as Andric, Selimovic, Crnjanski and others.


mat4 Says:

Hoho, slow down a bit. Read Andric and Crnjanski (Migrations a été traduit en français) mais je ne lis quand même des romans en serbe.

Mais il est bien vrai que les Balkans constituent un mosaïque authentique de différentes cultures et mentalités.


Wog boy Says:

Sorry, don’t speak French. Did I say something stupid, wouldn’t be first time?


mat4 Says:

Ooops. I didn’t even notice. Sorry, WB. I am just very tired.


jane Says:

Looks like Canada has a good shot at leading Spain 2:0 after today.


Gordo Says:

What is it about playing for his country that inspired Frank Dancevic? By rights he shouldn’t be playing 2 singles matches, but Pospisil is recovering from mono and coach Laurendeau is looking like a genius at this moment.

Go Frankie!!!


jane Says:

^ I know right? Go Frankie go! Sad about Vasek; hope he is better soon. He is playing doubles with Nestor.


mat4 Says:

Finally found the score. It seems Dancevic will easily win.


Gordo Says:

I have called him a bum many times, but this weekend to me he is Mr. Dancevic. I doubt if Milos can beat Granollers 1,2 and 2.

Canada is in the driver’s seat now. The stars were aligned in more ways than 1.


mat4 Says:

While we are at DC… I watched a few months ago a little film on youtube about the DC match between the USA and Argentina in 1980.

JMac played 6 hours the first day, losing 14-12 in the fifth against Clerc, then he played the doubles, then another 5 hours long fivesetter against Vilas, which he lost 6-4.

So much about the new “power of recuperation”.


jane Says:

Yes mat4. Indeed the wiki pages shows that of the 5 men’s matches that lasted longer than 6 hours, 3 of them were played in the 1980s during DC.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Longest_tennis_match_records

Or just have a look at Edberg’s run to his 1992 (I think it was) USO title for some seriously good recuperation abilities; what a run that was.


mat4 Says:

Yes, I remember some of this, but I checked: he won against Krajicek in 5 in the 4th round, then against Lendl in the 1/4, against Chang in the semi, before winning in 4 the final.

And everybody who has played serve and volley, rushed often to the net knows how much focus and energy it requires.

Did he have a coach from East-Germany?


mat4 Says:

But, as we all know, we live in an era of boring baseline tennis with impenetrable defences and rallies that last forever..

Where is the good all time when you could watch and admire a set of Ivanisevic vs Krajicek with on return per game and three winning serves? Even better: I am persuaded that they must have played at least one set where the players didn’t made a return of serve at all..


Brazil Federer Fan Says:

Oh the davis cup thing again. Please check the matches/year for all top 4 players and let us see who has got the highest? I am quite positive the answer to that is Roger Federer.

Please tell me when last rafa left spain to play an away tie for spain? I don’t even remember when he last left europe?

And djokovic, didn’t he retire in like 2 DC matches? I am not sure of another player who has this achievement?

Also tell me, how many davis cup doubles matches djokovic/nadal play?

Federer has to play 3 matches in 3 days, if he commits to DC. He doesn’t have a doubles specialist like djokovic has or a host of top 50 players like spain has. At this point in his career, DC is a no-no for federer. It is not worth the efforts. He better conserve it for the slams. In the end, DC is for losers. people like stepanek, hrbaty, lubicic, etc. They are the real heroes. No one will see nadal/djokovic as a davis cup hero irrespective of the no. of titles they win.

In the 80s, davis cup was much popular. Right now, not really so much. I would say even the olympics gold is worth much more than a DC. I mean djokovic would trade his DC for murray’s gold in the blink of an eye!

Fed, like Sampras, never valued DC. Sampras never used to care for early rounds of DC. However, US still had courier, chang, marting and washington to get them to the finals. Sampras would then condescend to play the finals. Roger obviously doesn’t have that luxury. He has to win not 1 or 2 points but ALL 3 points for switzerland.

Again, please tell me the average DC matches/year for the top 4? Let us see who has the worst DC participation?


Brazil Federer Fan Says:

Ivanisevic Vs Krajicek is the defining match of the 90s? Are you that stupid or pretending to be stupid?

That’s like defining this era by using a ferrer Vs almagro match.

The defining match-ups of the 90s was sampras-becker, sampras-agassi, becker-agassi, rafter-sampras, rafter-agassi, ivanisevic-agassi.

If you have played tennis and know tennis well, I am sure those match-ups were better than the pong match-ups that these slow courts throw up. It’s like watching a football match between two defensive teams! think about italy playing germany! yuckkkkkkkkkkkkkk!


scineram Says:

Very glad Canada will clear Spain form the World Group. The US and Serbia will be the strongest on the top half, their quarterfinal might decide the finalist. On the bottom I wonder if Delpo would return against France, they could have a good chance to make the final. I would also like to see if Rog would play the quarterfinal should Switzerland survive this round.


volley Says:

tennis in the mid- to late-90s was largely a turn off. it’s the only period I stopped watching for a while in over 30 years of following the game, (especially the sampras era at wimbledon). just as much as people complain about extended baseline rallies today, those serve-fests and 2-point games were a big yawn. agassi occasionally made it interesting because of his excellent return game and the contrast in style. btw, becker wasn’t really a force any longer by the mid-90s.

that’s not to say i don’t wish there were more players who would come to the net these days.


grendel Says:

mat4 7.51pm
“I always feel that I am still a little boy playing on the beach”

This reminded me of Isaac Newton’s famous words:

“I do not know what I may appear to the world, but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the sea-shore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.”

mat4 11p.m.

“And everybody who has played serve and volley, rushed often to the net knows how much focus and energy it requires.”

This sounds convincing. At the same time, people talk about a player saving emergy over the long haul (and thereby extending his career)by
going to the net more often. This sounds like a contradiction, but I suppose the key is the difference between short term expenditure of energy (net play) and long term – patrolling the back of the court. Agree?


courbon Says:

@Volley:I can not agree more with you!!In those days , if you had a good serve -you could win tournament (Ivanisevic-Wimbledon, thou I liked the guy ).And yes, I miss coming to the net.Djokovic is start doing it more-which I like it.Federe is good in that.I don’t mind baseline playing as long players change directions, spin-mix it up.Top 4 are doing that most of the time.Lower ranking players less, so you can have match as Monfils v Simon this AO…


jane Says:

Wow, speaking on long DC matches, the Swiss (Stan and Chud) and Czech (Berd and Rosol) teams have been playing for over 5.5 hours now. It’s 14-15 in the 5th, deuce.


jane Says:

17 all in the fifth, time on court 6:09. These guys are very close to breaking the longest men’s doubles match record, set in 2002 by Nalby/Arnold vs. Safin/Kafelnikov; that went six hours and 20 minutes.


the DA Says:

It’s one of those matches where you want to switch channels but can’t turn away. Ridiculous. This could have consequences for Wawa and Berdy in the upcoming season.


jane Says:

Okay, that’s it – the record for longest men’s doubles match is broken. They’ve hit 6:22 and it’s 19 all in the fifth, 15-30 to the Swiss at I type.

Looks like Rosol will have another claim to fame. ;) Whether they win or lose he’ll be in the record books now.


jane Says:

The DA – this is proof that a good return is underrated. ;) These guys are 2/14 and 3/14 on break point opportunities.


the DA Says:

jane – don’t we know it! ;) Crazy match points, what is it now, 7?


jane Says:

Rosol and Berd must have had 4 match points by now?? At least.


the DA Says:

That was the 8th according to the commies.


jane Says:

^DA – even more match points that I thought. And another one bites the dust. Wow. 3/19 on break point chances now for the Czechs.


the DA Says:

Stan holds after 10 mins! Who would’ve thought Wawa would be the stalwart in this tie? The match against Nole must have done wonders for him. The match between him & Berdy tomorrow will be interesting- probably not in a good way.


jane Says:

20-21 in the 5th now. 6:39 time on court. My stream is not in English DA so trying to figure out MP in my head. :) The people on the chat are hilarious… ha ha.

Going by the wiki link I posted earlier, there’s only one match men’s (doubles or singles) longer than 7 hours – the dreaded Isner vs. Mahut.


the DA Says:

The Czechs have had 8 MPs. Stan saved 5 of them in the last game. It’s becoming car crash tennis. Both sides want this point desperately.


jane Says:

Rosol could’ve had that last volley. But he’s not too good up there.


jane Says:

Watching Berdych play doubles, one wonders why he doesn’t venture to net more in singles. He’s a good volleyer and he has a great serve to follow in as well. Holy crap they must be getting tired. The audience looks like “just END it already…” LOL.

Czechs are holding easily; you’d think they’d have an easier time of breaking.

Everyone on chat thinks “new balls” mean a break here lol.


the DA Says:

3 more MPs. Don’t think Stan will survive this time.


jane Says:

Triple MP! Looks like they might not crack the 7 hour mark after all?? Then again…


jane Says:

10 MPs save – 1 more here…


jane Says:

Unbelievable…


the DA Says:

Rename him WoWow. He saves another 3 MPs – that makes 12 in total!


scineram Says:

They HOLD! 7 hours. Second longest pro match ever. Win it, Suiss!!!


mat4 Says:

@Grendel:

“This reminded me of Isaac Newton’s famous words”

Yes, I was tired and a bit in a particular mood, and it was indeed a reminiscence of that sentence. I like it a lot. And I like misquotations…

About tennis: I really don’t know. I am certain that a good serve helps a lot, not certain that net rushing does. Some good statistics could help: how long did serve and volley players remain at the top in general?

Then, there was the continual change in technology – there was a shift in the middle eighties, another one at the end of the nineties. It distorts the results.

Finally, how many players do play like Nadal, Murray and Djokovic? Ferrer? Who else? Let’s look at the top ten: Berdych, Tsonga, Federer, Gasquet… no. They do play from the baseline, but it is a different kind of players. Perhaps only Tipsarevic.

So, I really don’t know.


the DA Says:

Sorry 11 in total. Berdy trying anything to get a point now, claiming Stan touched the net before the ball went out. tsk tsk


jane Says:

It’s official; they’ve passed the 7:00 hour mark. 2 more MPs.

If the Swiss lose today, they’ll be in a 1-2 hole. Spain are down 0-2 already. Imagine if both Switzerland and Spain were ousted from the top DC group? I wonder when the last time that would’ve happened was?


jane Says:

OMG, Czechs win – 24-22 in the 5th, 7:02 on court.

Well, that was kind of anti-climactic in the end – a double fault.


the DA Says:

Double fault by Chudinelli on the 13th MP. What a disappointing way to end the match. Just over 7 hours. All the pressure on Stan tomorrow.


nadalista Says:

Djokovic-Nadal 2012 Australian Open final lasted 5hrs 53minutes;

2013 Davis cup dubs match Switzerland-Czech Rep. 7hrs and counting.

Wonder which rule the ATP will tighten to stop this from ever happening again…..


sub023 Says:

What can Wawrinka do when Chiudinelli is such a weak link?


jane Says:

France, Serbia and Argentina are through – and I am sure the USA will be as well (Bryans up 5-2 in set one).

Italy are 2-1 over Croatia.
Kazakhstan are 2-1 over Austria
Czech are 2-1 over Swiss

Canada are 2-0 over Spain. Nestor/Pospisil are slated to play Granollers/Lopez. I wonder if Pospisil is a good choice given he’s been recovering from mono. Anyhow, we’ll see.


jane Says:

That was the longest DC match in history – singles or doubles:

http://tinyurl.com/b5tkdtx


grendel Says:

“Watching Berdych play doubles, one wonders why he doesn’t venture to net more in singles”

This type of comment is frequently made of various players. One has to think that doubles really is radically different to singles. Whatever the technical side of it – lets ask MMT or Ben – I think there is a clear mental factor involved. In doubles, Berdych can venture to the net confident that he has a partner to cover him. In singles, he is obviously on his own. There is the fear of being passed, the lack of a ready instinct as to just when to approach (that problem doesn’t arise nearly so much in doubles), so the tendency is to rely on the old and trusted. Even though experience has shown that just isn’t good enough against Djokovic or Nadal. His occasional success against Federer and his good record against Murray has, oddly, probably been bad for him, by inducing a certain complacency, or at any rate stymying iniative.

b.t.w.jane, you correctly pulled me up the other for forgetting that Wawrinka, before getting to Ferrer and Murray in the AO, had to get past Berdych. How (you wondered) would WaWa find Berdych?

Find out tomorrow, eh?


jane Says:

grendel, I actually checked the H2H and it turns out that Stan has a solid record versus Berdych – he’s won 5 of their 9 matches, but most pertinently, perhaps, he’s won the last 3 in a row, played in 2010 and 2011. They did not meet last year.

Strong points about doubles vs singles net approaches. Makes perfectly good sense.


Giles Says:

Ahh, if only the Goat played!!


RZ Says:

Dammit Roger, why didn’t you play!!! Stan needs a 2nd singles player for the Swiss to have any chance.


jane Says:

The Canadian team is one set away from winning 3:0 against Spain and reaching the DC quarterfinals for the first time in history. This would be really special for tennis recognition in Canada. But it won’t be easy. Fitness could be an issue for Vasek the longer they go, and of course both Lopez and Granollers are highly ranked in doubles (I think 3 and 5 respectively).


jane Says:

Doesn’t look good for Canada anymore, now that it’s a 5th set.

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