Sweden Blunders Davis Cup Surface Choice, Says McEnroe
by Richard Vach | September 20th, 2007, 4:51 pm

Former U.S. Davis Cup captain John McEnroe says Swedish captain Mats Wilander and crew made a blunder when choosing a fast indoor carpet to host the U.S. in this Friday’s Davis Cup semifinals.

“I feel like they played into our hands really,” McEnroe told the BlackRock Tour of Champions senior tour where he is this week playing an event in Paris. “I’d be surprised if we didn’t win pretty comfortably, really. I know [Thomas] Johansson has had some good results in the past on hardcourts but [Andy] Roddick just destroyed him at the [US] Open and it’s hard to see Sweden winning three matches.”

The Swedes will likely go with Johansson and Joachim Johansson, returning from injury, in singles, with their big gun Robin Soderling sidelined with a wrist injury.

McEnroe commented that there will also be pressure on the U.S. captain, his brother Patrick, to end the U.S.’s 12-year drought.
“I’m a little bit tight for my brother just because he’s being doing it for a while and hasn’t won it yet and the pressure’s on,” said McEnroe, who coached the U.S. team for only one year after quitting in disgust at how difficult it was to get then-players Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi to play. “But I think that the cards have fallen for him this year and playing Sweden there is difficult but it’s better than playing Argentina down in Argentina. He’s had some pretty good things happen and now if we get to the finals we’ll probably play at home so I think it looks good for us.”

The winner of the U.S.-Sweden clash will face either Russia or Germany in the final. Roddick and James Blake will represent the U.S. in singles.

Joachim Johansson hasn’t played a match in eight months due to various injuries and opens against Roddick. The Swedes have history on their side as three times the Americans have visited Gothenburg’s Scandinavium arena in a semifinal or final, and three times the U.S. has left losers.

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13 Comments for Sweden Blunders Davis Cup Surface Choice, Says McEnroe

beerme Says:

even if they dont like clay that much the swedish team should have chose clay. roddick and blake will power them off the court, stupid choice. it might have been smart if they went into the decision with j.johansson but they didnt and soderling is quite good on clay. he wasnt injured when they made the decision right?

张奔斗 Says:

It looks like the Americans should have no problem making it into the finals. Will the finals be home or away for them? If they can choose the surface and choose a fast surface, they have a decent chance of winning it (beating Russia). However if the Russians get to choose and pick clay, I’d put the chances of Davydenko plus Youzny or Safin defeating Roddick and Blake at more than 50%.

penise Says:

12 years without a win for nepotism boy pmac; what is this a lame family business? get him out

JDC Says:

Considering that more than 12 countries participate in Davis Cup, you can’t expect to win it too frequently. Between the main group and the world group, that’s 32 countries (I believe). Even winning it once every 16 years is pretty good.

beerme Says:

no its not.

Sashenka Says:

It’ll be played in the US if both USA and Russia win. If Germany does something magical and wins, and the US win as well, then it’ll be in Germany

John (1) Says:

At first I thought this was a slam dunk for the USA. But now that Blake got beat, I’m not so sure.

Sweden could win doubles and if Jonas plays singles against Blake, an upset is possible.

allcourt Says:

Why would they not play Pim Pim (J. Johansson) against Blake on Sunday? He looks as if he could blow James off the court. I see Jonas playing singles only if Sweden has already won the tie (please, no) or if all the hard playing today makes Pim Pim’s shoulder act up.

funches Says:

Anything JMac says about Davis Cup should be ignored unless he’s talking about his playing days. He was a raging embarrassment in his one year as captain, insulting anyone and everything with his Ugly America garbage. They played the wrong national anthem two days in a row for a team the U.S. beat in Los Angeles, and McEnroe griped that the disgraceful mistake was being overplayed by the media.

PMac made some curious player choices in his early days, but he clearly is the right person for the job. The players love playing for him and never turn him down.

Ray Davis Says:

Davis Cup is watered way down, I mean who cares? make it like the World Cup and people will care for their own squads. I prefer to see Federer vs. Nadal on any surface any day of the week. Roddick and Blake? hardly Mac & Jimbo……

ncot Says:

they shouldn’t let blake in the finals. he will just find a way to lose the match. put ginepri instead. at least he’ll grind it out.

funches Says:

Yeah, Ginepri. Now there’s a clutch player. I remember that significant match he won, what, two years ago? He can’t even win small matches now.

dodobird Says:

richard vacht must be sooo disappointed that the americans beat sweden. he has a big unrequited man crush on roddick you know.

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