|Posted on January 30, 2014 at 8:05 PM|
2013 champions Czech Republic play host to World Group new boys Netherlands in the first round in 2014. The Czechs take a 4-1 head-to-head record into the tie with the Dutch team's only victory coming nearly 90 years ago in 1925.
The Czechs, now unbeaten in nine consecutive Davis Cup ties, have not lost on home soil since suffering a huge upset against Kazakhstan in the first round in 2011.
Netherlands cruised to a 5-0 victory over Austria in September's World Group play-offs, earning their place in the competition's top flight for the first time since 2009. That year they fell in the first round to Argentina. The last time the Dutch won a World Group tie was in 2005 against Switzerland.
Stepanek to kick off Czech quest for Davis Cup hat-trick
OSTRAVA, Czech Republic (AP) — Radek Stepanek has recovered from a neck injury to open the Czech Republic's quest for the third straight Davis Cup title by playing the opening singles match against Robin Haase of the Netherlands in their first-round series.
Stepanek retired from his Australian Open's first-round match against Blaz Kavcic in the fourth set.
Thursday's draw also pits Australian Open semifinalist Tomas Berdych against Igor Sijsling.
Berdych and Stepanek teamed up to beat Spain in the 2012 final and did the same to defeat Serbia in November to retain the title.
In Saturday's doubles, the Czech pair of Lukas Rosol and Jiri Vesely will face Thiemo de Bakker and Jean-Julien Rojer.
Reverse singles are scheduled for Sunday.
The winner will face either Canada or Japan in April's quarterfinals.