Great Britain Looks To Make Waves In New Davis Cup Format Following Latest Win - UBITENNIS
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Great Britain Looks To Make Waves In New Davis Cup Format Following Latest Win

The former champions have their eyes set on one of the wild cards up for grabs in 2019.

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Despite playing in a tie that had little impact on their future in the competition, Great Britain’s passion for the Davis Cup was no less during their win over Uzbekistan.

 

On Sunday Cameron Norrie sealed the unassailable lead after defeating Sanjar Fayziev 6-2, 6-2, 6-0. Handing the host nation the 3-1 victory with a match in hand. Norrie’s win was also a case of redemption for the world No.70. On Friday he has a two-sets lead against former Australian Open boys finalist Jurabek Karimov before losing.

“I was pretty nervous coming into the tie today and Friday but the crowd got me through it. It’s always difficult playing your first home tie but I learnt a lot this weekend and I’m really proud of the team,” BBC Sport quoted Norrie as saying afterwards.

The win was achieved without the help of either Andy Murray or Kyle Edmund. Both players have opted to miss the event to focus on their fitness. Murray is on the comeback from hip surgery and Edmund has recently been hampered by illness.

Instead Dan Evans clinched a crucial five-set win over Denis Istomin on Friday. Evans was playing his first Davis Cup match since returning from a doping ban. Then in the doubles, Jamie Murray and Dom Inglot triumphed over their Uzbek rivals yesterday.

The tie was a play-off clash between the two countries, but it is technically insignificant due to changes being made to the Davis Cup. From 2019 the first part of the competition will be hosted either home or away followed by a week-long competition taking place at the end of the year. 18 teams will play in one location with Barcelona F.C. footballer Gerard Pique and his company Kosmos being a key investor in the new initiative.

Whilst the importance of Great Britain’s victory have been played down, the same can’t be said about the players or coaches involved.

“We have a great team spirit. What’s important is that before this weekend, a lot of people were saying it was a meaningless tie. I think you’ve seen from both teams, and how the crowd have reacted, this was hardly meaningless. It was brilliant.” Said team captain Leon Smith.
“The crowd like home ties, and so do we. We wanted to win this so we’re seeded for the draw. The new format, now the decision has been made, we have to embrace it.”

Looking ahead to the future, the British team are hopeful that they have a good chance of being awarded a wild card for next year. In the 18-team end-of-year tournament, two teams will gain entry with the help of a wild card. Britain won the Davis Cup title back in 2015.

“It feels like the wild cards are going to be a tricky one for them to decide to allocate before the qualifiers,” Smith said.
“Clearly we’d be a strong candidate based on the last three or four years in the competition, and how we’ve hosted ties. It will be interesting.”

Should they not get a wild card, the British team will be seeded for the first stage of the competition. Next year’s competition will get underway in February.

Davis Cup

Gerard Pique’s Pessimistic Davis Cup Outlook Blasted By French Tennis Star

The football player has been urged to ‘put more energy’ in finding a solution for the event to take place in 2020.

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Kosmos founder Gerard Pique has come under fire over his plans for the Davis Cup Finals later this year after recently casting doubt on the event taking place due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.

 

Pique, whose company helped finance the transformation of the 120-year-old team competition, recently admitted that he was doubtful that the event could go ahead if crowds weren’t allowed to attend. Last year was the first time the new format of the competition took place with 18 teams featuring in a week-long round-robin tournament which was won by host nation Spain.

“I’m a bit pessimistic, to have the Davis Cup with no fans is difficult,” Pique told Movistar.
“There is a lot of uncertainty. We are listening to what the sport’s ministry and the government are telling us about whether we’ll have the ability to have fans.”

All professional tennis tournaments have been suspended since March due to the Pandemic. Officials are hoping to be able to get the sport going again in August ahead of the US Open that is scheduled to take place. Although some have doubts about the chances of the Tour’s starting by then, including world No.43 John Millman.

Amid the ongoing uncertainty, French tennis star Nicolas Mahut has criticized Pique’s bleak outlook for this year’s Davis Cup finale. The 38-year-old has represented his country in 13 ties, including the 2018 final as well as the semifinals in two other years.

“We don’t have a lot of information. But as a player, you can just trust the official statements. And when I hear Pique, I’m extremely disappointed,” Mahut told L’Equipe.

Mahut has called on Pique to explore more options such as potentially relocating the event to another country if it would make it safer for the event to go ahead. Implying that he was his duty to do so after setting ‘to destroy the formula’ of the event. Critics of the revamp have accused Pique of ruining the traditional competition.

“I would like him to put as much energy into saving the Davis Cup that he has set up. That is to say, to find solutions for it to take place in Madrid or elsewhere, as he has set to destroy the formula that had been in place for over a hundred years,” he said,
“The message he sent through his statements, is: ” If Madrid is complicated and we cannot do it, well it cancels and I save some money. ” And it bothers me a lot compared to what has happened for more than a year. We don’t play with this competition. Maybe that suits it.”

Kosmos has signed a $3 billion 25-year deal with the ITF to acquire the rights for the Davis Cup Finals.

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Davis Cup

Davis Cup Finals In Doubt, Admits Gerard Pique

The Kosmos founder explains why he isn’t too optimistic about the team event going ahead later this year.

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MADRID, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 24: Crowds of peoples during of the Davis Cup by Rakuten Madrid Finals 2019 at Caja Magica on November 24, 2019 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Pedro Salado / Kosmos Tennis)

The chances of this year’s Davis Cup Finals taking place are still up in the air with one of the key figures involved in the competition openly saying that he is ‘pessimistic’ about its chances.

 

Football star Gerard Pique is one the driving forces behind the new format following a huge financial investment from his company Kosmos. Signing a 25-year deal with the International Tennis Federation worth in the region of $3 billion. Despite the significant investment, Pique admits that he has low hopes of the event taking place later this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. All professional tennis tournaments have been halted since March.

“There is a lot of uncertainty, we try to be aware of what the government says regarding sports and to whether we can put spectators inside the Caja Magica,” Pique said during an interview with Movistar.
“I would say I am a bit pessimistic, because a Davis Cup without fans is difficult.
“I think that nobody at the moment has the certainty that we can put fans in or if it will have to be behind closed doors. As the days go by, I suppose we will have a little more clarity.”

Spain is currently in the process of relaxing some of their lockdown restrictions with tennis players being able to train at local facilities from next week. The country is following a four-stage plan with the hope that their premier La Liga football league will resume next month at some stage.

However, the issue for the Davis Cup is the limited number of fans that would be able to go to the tournament if it takes place. In more advanced stages of the plans, no more than 50 people can attend an indoor venue. Although the number could be increased by November, it will be a stark difference to 2019. Held at the Caja Magica, the total capacity of the premier court is 12,500 people.

Last year’s final saw Spain lift the title for the first time since 2011 after they defeated Canada in the final. The two teams are seeded third and sixth in this year’s draw.

The Davis Cup is scheduled to take place between November 23-29 in Madrid. The ATP, WTA and ITF will not restart their Tour’s until at least July 13th, however, there is speculation that the suspension will be extended in the coming weeks.

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Davis Cup

Spain to face Russia and Ecuador in Davis Cup Finals next November

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The draw of the 2020 Davis Cup Finals in Madrid took place at the ITF offices in London on 12th March. The Davis Cup Finals will begin in Madrid on 23rd November 2020.

 

Defending champions Spain has been drawn in the Group A against Russia and Ecuador. Last year Rafael Nadal guided the Spanish team to the triumph in the final against Canada at the Caja Magica.

This year’s ATP Cup champions Serbia will face Germany and Austria in a Group A, which features three top 10 players Novak Djokovic, Dominic Thiem and Alexander Zverev. Djokovic beat Thiem in this year’s final of the Australian Open.

In the Group E the USA will take on Italy in a re-match of last year’s late round-robin match. These two teams were drawn against Colombia.Last year’s finalists Canada will meet Sweden and Kazakhstan.

Three former Davis Cup champions France, Great Britain and Czech Republic have been drawn in Group C.

 

Croatia will clash against Australia and Hungary in Group D.

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