Davis Cup Preview: Federer, Murray Highlight First Round
by Staff | January 30th, 2014, 11:07 pm

Former Grand Slam champions Roger Federer and Andy Murray headline the marquee in the first round of Davis Cup this weekend. Among the eight ties scheduled, Federer and Australian Open champion Stanislas Wawrinka lead Switzerland into combat against Serbia who are without Novak Djokovic.

“I always kept a tiny door open and I am glad to be here,” Federer said. “Playing here is something I was excited about when I left Australia. I spoke to team captain Severin Luthi and Stan, we talked about it and the decision was made pretty quickly.

“My priority is to win tomorrow’s match and I am looking forward to the entire weekend but not much further than that. I don’t want to think too far ahead. We have a chance but this is a year-long competition and there is plenty of time.”

Meanwhile, Murray is in San Diego where he’ll anchor Great Britain’s hopes against team USA. The reigning Wimbledon champion is expected to play all three days against a USA team without John Isner who withdrew. Isner will be replaced by Donald Young who will make his Davis Cup debut.

“I obviously want to win as many matches as possible,” Murray said. “I’ll try to win as many points as I can. If I’m required to play all three days I’ll give it my best shot.

“I’m feeling fine,” Murray said of his back. “I’ve been surprised by the recovery. It’s a long process, it’s hard, it’s challenging mentally to come back from a surgery but I’ve trained hard and have done all the right rehab.”

Another intriguing tie sends Italy down to Argentina where Seppi/Fognini will clash with Berlocq/Monaco on the red clay in a very even matchup. And teen sensation Nick Kyrgios will join Lleyton Hewitt as Australia travels to Europe to take on a very deep French team.

Davis Cup Notes (ITF):

Czech Republic v Netherlands – Ostrava, CZE – hard (indoors)
Head-to-head: Czech Republic leads 4-1
Two-time defending champion Czech Republic begins the defence of its title with a home tie against Netherlands. Czech Republic is looking to extend its nation-record winning streak to 10 straight ties, while newly promoted Netherlands will hope to cause a huge upset and reach the World Group quarterfinals for the first time since 2005.

R1: Radek Stepanek (CZE) v Robin Haase (NED)
R2: Tomas Berdych (CZE) v Igor Sijsling (NED)
R3: Lukas Rosol/Jiri Vesely (CZE) v Thiemo de Bakker/Jean-Julien Rojer (NED)
R4: Tomas Berdych (CZE) v Robin Haase (NED)
R5: Radek Stepanek (CZE) v Igor Sijsling (NED)

Japan v Canada – Tokyo, JPN – hard (indoors)
Head-to-head: Japan leads 5-0
Canada faces a testing trip to Tokyo as last year’s semfinalist bids for its first win over Japan on their sixth meeting. The two teams are meeting for the first time since 1938, with Canada looking for just its third World Group win since the formation of the elite tier in 1981 and Japan bidding to reach the World Group quarterfinals for the first time.

R1: Kei Nishikori (JPN) v Peter Polansky (CAN)
R2: Go Soeda (JPN) v Frank Dancevic (CAN)
R3: Yuichi Sugita / Yasutaka Uchiyama (JPN) v Daniel Nestor / Vasek Pospisil (CAN)
R4: Kei Nishikori (JPN) v Frank Dancevic (CAN)
R5: Go Soeda (JPN) v Peter Polansky(CAN)

Germany v Spain – Frankfurt, GER – hard (indoors)
Head-to-head: Germany leads 9-6
Germany will be hoping to spring an upset when the nation plays host to 5-time champion Spain in Frankfurt. Germany is looking to reach the quarterfinals for the first time since 2011, but will have to stop a Spanish side that will be determined to avoid suffering back-to-back first round defeats for the first time since 2005-06.

R1: Philipp Kohlschreiber (GER) v Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP)
R2: Florian Mayer (GER) v Feliciano Lopez (ESP)
R3: Daniel Brands / Tommy Haas (GER) v David Marrero / Fernando Verdasco (ESP)
R4: Philipp Kohlschreiber (GER) v Feliciano Lopez (ESP)
R5: Florian Mayer (GER) v Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP)

France v Australia – La Roche sur Yon, FRA – clay (indoors)
Head-to-head: Australia leads 10-4
France hosts Australia, who returns to the elite 16 nation pool after six years in Zone Group action, looking to reach the quarterfinals for the fifth consecutive year. France has lost 10 of its 14 meetings with Australia but will hope to narrow the deficit in their previous head-to-heads and deny the visitors a spot in the quarterfinals for the first time since 2006.

R1: Richard Gasquet (FRA) v Nick Kyrgios (AUS)
R2: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA) v Lleyton Hewitt (AUS)
R3: Julien Benneteau / Gael Monfils (FRA) v Chris Guccione / Lleyton Hewitt (AUS)
R4: Richard Gasquet (FRA) v Lleyton Hewitt (AUS)
R5: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA) v Nick Kyrgios (AUS)

USA v Great Britain – San Diego, USA – clay (outdoors)
Head-to-head: USA leads 11-7
USA opens its 100th year of Davis Cup competition against Great Britain in San Diego, the first meeting between the two teams since 1999. USA leads the head-to-head 11-7, but the visiting nation will be determined to reach its first World Group quarterfinal since 1986.

R1: Donald Young (USA) v Andy Murray (GBR)
R2: Sam Querrey (USA) v James Ward (GBR)
R3: Bob Bryan/Mike Bryan (USA) v Colin Fleming/Andy Murray (GBR)
R4: Sam Querrey (USA) v Andy Murray (GBR)
R5: Donald Young (USA) v James Ward (GBR)

Argentina v Italy – Mar del Plata, ARG – clay (outdoors)
Head-to-head: Argentina leads 1-0
Argentina will look to preserve its record of reaching the quarterfinals or better every year since returning to the World Group in 2002 when it takes on Italy in Mar del Plata. Italy reached the quarterfinals for the first time since 1998 last year, however, and will be keen for a repeat performance this year.

R1: Carlos Berlocq (ARG) v Andreas Seppi (ITA)
R2: Juan Monaco (ARG) v Fabio Fognini (ITA)
R3: Eduardo Schwank / Horacio Zeballos (ARG) v Simone Bolelli / Filippo Volandri (ITA)
R4: Carlos Berlocq (ARG) v Fabio Fognini (ITA)
R5: Juan Monaco (ARG) v Andreas Seppi (ITA)

Kazakhstan v Belgium – Astana, KAZ – hard (indoors)
Head-to-head: first meeting
Kazakhstan is looking to reproduce the kind of form that saw it reach the quarterfinals for a second time last year when the nation hosts Belgium in Astana. Belgium is bidding to reach the quarterfinals for the first time since 2007, having lost in the first round in 12 of its 15 previous appearances.

R1: Mikhail Kukushkin (KAZ) v Ruben Bemelmans (BEL)
R2: Andrey Golubev (KAZ) v David Goffin (BEL)
R3: Evgeny Korolev / Denis Yevseyev (KAZ) v Kimmer Coppejans / Olivier Rochus (BEL)
R4: Mikhail Kukushkin (KAZ) v David Goffin (BEL)
R5: Andrey Golubev (KAZ) v Ruben Bemelmans (BEL)

Serbia v Switzerland – Novi Sad, SRB – hard (indoors)
Head-to-head: tied 2-2
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 34th year of the World Group.

R1: Ilija Bozoljac (SRB) v Roger Federer (SUI)
R2: Dusan Lajovic (SRB) v Stanislas Wawrinka (SUI)
R3: Filip Krajinovic/Nenad Zimonjic (SRB) v Marco Chiudinelli/Michael Lammer (SUI)
R4: Dusan Lajovic (SRB) v Roger Federer (SUI)
R5: Ilija Bozoljac (SRB) v Stanislas Wawrinka (SUI)

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41 Comments for Davis Cup Preview: Federer, Murray Highlight First Round

Michael Says:

Roger and Wawrinka make a powerful combination. I am sure with their fire power they can certainly take Switzerland to the glorious path of a historic Davis Cup triumph, a feat which has so far eluded Roger and his team mate. Infact I am surprised that this wonderful team couldn’t make much headway earlier despite their weightage. Perhaps the absence of one of the two in previous encounters bogged it down.

metan Says:

Michael, well said. Hope. Swiss gets it. And it will make Roger achievement nicer. I am really glad that he is joined in.

Giles Says:

Fed would never have played this tie if joker was participating!

metan Says:

Giles at 6.15.lol

Giles Says:

@ metan. It’s the true, no? :)))

Hippy Chic Says:

Go Andy and team GB.

Rogerisclass Says:

go Roger and Stan. I love you Roger :)

Michael Says:

Metan, Thanks. Let us hope for the best.

Mr Larvey Says:

Did anyone see Fed’s match? I missed that. The court seems to be very fast.

Margot Says:

Don’t really want Andy to be playing tbh and certainly not singles and doubles.
With The Bryans on board, doubles is pointless any how.

Mr Larvey Says:

Stan is definitely not playing as well as a week ago, but that is quite understandable. He should still get the job done… at least now it looks like it.

Daniel Says:

This indeed could be Roger’s year on Davis Cup, if he and Wawa fully commit to it.

Djoko probably won’t favor DC this years nor will Nadal. Ferrer may have his last decent year, his rankings already started to fall so Spain and Serbia will not be the same force as both Nadal and Djoko will most likely fight for #1 second semester.

Gordo Says:

With Spain and Serbia both down 2-0 it is unlikely either will advance, although bizarre unlikelihoods do occur. The two next most dangerous teams – reigning champs Czech Republic and France are both on the other half of the draw, so yes it should be a cakewalk to the final.

If Switzerland meets the Czechs in the final Federer should make sure his twin daughters are in the stands. Their presence should distract Stepanek. :)

The wild card in the top half is Canada, who is 1-1 against Japan, despite playing Dancevic and Polansky in place of injured Raonic and Pospisil. You have to favour Canada in the doubles – Nestor and anyone should beat a weak Japanese pair, so this will probably go down to the 5th Ruben of Polansky vs Soeda. If Canada gets through this they could be tough in 3 months, when Raonic and Pospisil are healthy again.

Gordo Says:

Auto correct – (sigh). That’s 5th rubber, not Reuben.

madmax Says:

Giles Says:
Fed would never have played this tie if joker was participating!

January 31st, 2014 at 6:15 am

Giles, on the one hand you are criticising federer when he doesn’t play, and calling him names, and now, that he does play, you still coming up with garbage.

Enough is enough. Happy he is playing. He is still, believe it or not, 3rd on list of most davis cup matches played, which is great in itself!

Allez Fed!

Purcell Says:

Well done Madmax. Your tenacity when dealing with Princess Giles is beyond admirable.
In the Swiss line up for photographs Roger accidentally clocked Stan with his elbow. Much hilarity in the studio plus an embarrassed Fed.
Goes without saying that attendance at US v GB appalling. Even Australia v France not full but a least a good atmosphere. Don’t know about others as no coverage.

the DA Says:

Andy looked great in his thrashing of Donald Young today. That was the best I’ve seen him play on the red dirt since 2011.

the DA Says:

Wow! James Ward stepped up (after Sam Querrey crumbled a bit) to win the 2nd point for team GB. What a comeback. Will this be the most dismal result for team USA in recent memory? A shocker. I’m glad I’m not really into doing the nationalistic support thing – I’d be depressed.

Djokerfan Says:

Federer playing has suddenly breathed life into the Davis cup. It would have been much more awesome if Djoker played too. Imagine Federer- Djoker in Serbia with the tie at 2-2. Djoker has played and beaten the Swiss in Basle, so it’s only fair he gets to play him in Serbia!

Kimberly Says:

@theDA I’m sure Murray played great but keep it I. Perspective,
It’s Donald young !

And querrey crumbled a bit? I would say he crumbled more than bit. In fact I shut the tv off

Margot Says:

Wow! James Ward, would-a thunk it? Though he did beat Sam at Queens so not a complete shocker.
@the DA
Agree, Andy looked terrific. Was moving very well, very reassuring.

Giles Says:

A few years back Rafa invited James Ward to train with him in Majorca. Maybe Rafa saw some potential in James even back then? James is a great guy. Let’s hope he takes some encouragement from his performance yesterday. Awesome!

Giles Says:

Purcell. Nah, Princess Federer sounds more appropriate. Me no princess!
Read the article by Sports Illustrated I posted earlier and the reference to Princess Federer. Hilarious!

Purcell Says:

SI is anathema to those outside the USA as any clued up sportsperson will tell you. The fact that you read it and worse still, think it’s funny suggests that you should stick to your Princess Diaries.

Purcell Says:

The wise words of the coach gave James some inspiration to push on to victory. Well done to both.

metan Says:

Keith Nishikori and Yasutaka Uchiyama just beat Daniel Nestor and Frank Dancevic from Canada. Japan lead 2-1. And if they win on Sunday, they will be in quarter final. Historic for the asian. So proud…. come on Japan!!! Rolls in.

metan Says:

Sorry meant. Kei

Giles Says:

Actually “Princess Federer” was not part of the SI article per se but a term used in a comment to the article. In any event,
Jon Wertheim is a great writer.
# PrincessFedererWhiner

the DA Says:

@Kimberly – I’m conscious of the opponent but my opinion was based purely on his play. I was impressed with his movement and hitting, especially as it’s his worst surface.

@ margot – yes, our fears were laid to rest. As is Andy today. Dom Inglot will take his place today to ensure he’s 100% for Sunday.

Hippy Chic Says:

Donald Young did beat Andy once before,so i dont suppose hes an oponent to take lightly.

Kimberly Says:

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^its still Donald young^^^^^^^^^^^

the DA Says:

^^^^^^^^^^^^^he still played great^^^^^^^^^^


skeezer Says:

Who is Donald Young??

metan Says:

^lefty guy, American tennis player.

Kimberly Says:

Donald Young has had an illustrious career or lack of career. He actually has a decent bit of talent but was given Too much too soon and became a bit of a brat. He has actually worked his way back up the rankings a bit by winning a bunch of challengers. Anyway, while he was talented he was not a hard worker and has not loved up to what he was hyped to be as a junior. As a result the American tennis media and commentators rag on him endlessly as I am doing as well in this blog

skeezer Says:

^and i was too kinda by asking who he is. I know very well who DY is, and the of hope when he first came out, but been mostly a dud so far.

Margot Says:

Lol skeeze, that’s the trouble with irony on the internet. It just gets lost in the ether!
@ kimberly
Like the DA, I was not interested in whom Andy was playing, could’ve been numero 777 for all I care. I was just interested in how Andy was moving- and he looked good :)

Kimberly Says:

@margot and the da—I was more taking the opportunity to rag on Donald young than talking about Murray. I sure he looked great.

Giles Says:

Fed sumo wrestling, playing rugby in this new Gillette ad.
Really fed! Really Gillette!
What can I say apart from ridiculous!

Giles Says:

Tennis X.
I think you should open a new thread on Fed’s latest Gillette commercial which I have linked above.

Mr Larvey Says:


Messi did great Rafa imitation :)

Top story: Andy Murray Leads Great Britain Into Davis Cup Final Against Belgium This Weekend
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