|Posted on September 16, 2010 at 7:37 AM|
Beau Tomas Berdych (CZE) at the draw ceremony - Photographer: Srdjan Stevanovic
*Thank you Mr. Stevanovic!*
Djokovic first on court for Serbia
World No. 2 Novak Djokovic gets proceedings underway for Serbia as the hosts bid to reach the final of Davis Cup by BNP Paribas for the first time.
Djokovic, who comes into this weekend on the back of a runner-up performance at the US Open, will face the Czech Republic's Radek Stepanek in the opening singles rubber on Friday.
Janko Tipsarevic has been chosen to play in the second singles rubber in favour of Viktor Troicki. Tipsarevic upset the odds at the US Open by beating home favourite Andy Roddick in the second round at Flushing Meadows.
He will be hoping to replicate his US Open form if he is to cause another upset against world No. 7 Tomas Berdych in the second singles rubber.
In the doubles, Troicki and Nenad Zimonjic will team up against Jan Hajek and Ivo Minar.
The full draw is as follows:
Friday, September 17, 2010
Novak Djokovic (SRB) vs Radek Stepanek (CZE)
Janko Tipsarevic (SRB) vs Tomas Berdych (CZE)
Saturday, September 18, 2010
Viktor Troicki / Nenad Zimonjic (SRB) vs Jan Hajek / Ivo Minar (CZE)
Sunday, September 19, 2010
Novak Djokovic (SRB) vs Tomas Berdych (CZE)
Janko Tipsarevic (SRB) vs Radek Stepanek (CZE)
Update Sept 17, 2010: Djokovic late withdrawal for Serbs
Serb Novak Djokovic has missed the first match of his country's Davis Cup tennis semi-final with the Czech Republic due to gastroenteritis.
Serbia Davis Cup team members, from left: team captain Bogdan Obradovic, Viktor Troicki, Nenad Zimonjic, Novak Djokovic and Janko Tipsarevic pose with Czech Republic Davis Cup team members: Radek Stepanek, Tomas Berdych, Jan Hajek, Ivo Minar and team captain Jaroslav Navratil, during a draw for Davis Cup semifinal match in Belgrade, Serbia, Thursday, Sept. 16, 2010. Serbia will play against Czech Republic for the Davis Cup Semifinals starting on Sept. 17 in Belgrade.
SERBIA v CZECH REPUBLIC
Venue: Belgrade Arena, Belgrade, Serbia (hard - indoors)
by ATP Staff | 16.09.2010
The last two Grand Slam finalists, Novak Djokovic and Tomas Berdych, will attempt to lead their countries into the Davis Cup final when Serbia and 2009 runner-up Czech Republic square off from 17-19 September in Belgrade. Meanwhile, David Nalbandian will look to put together another heroic performance in Argentina’s semi-final tie against France in Lyon.
Serbia had never advanced beyond the first round in Davis Cup World Group action prior to this year, but is now one winning tie away from reaching the final.
“It’s a historical chance; we are aware of that,” said Djokovic, who joins Janko Tipsarevic, Viktor Troicki and Nenad Zimonjic on the Serbian squad. ‘We look forward to these three days. We won against [the U.S.] at home in the first round and Croatia away, so two very strong teams and we have proven that we can play really well at home and away on any surface. It gives us a lot of advantage, a lot of options. We have a young team that still has many years ahead.”
Djokovic, who has a 4-0 record in Davis Cup action this year, will open the semi-final tie against Czech Radek Stepanek at the Belgrade Arena, just two days after returning home from his runner-up finish at the US Open.
“I’m feeling very happy with my achievements in New York,” he said on Thursday. “It was a great, successful two weeks of tennis. It’s unfortunate a little bit for this Davis Cup tie that I came just yesterday, I got into Serbia on Wednesday, so a little bit late. But still I’m managing to find the energy and of course I am aware of the great importance of this match against Czech Republic, so I will try to get ready.”
In the second rubber Friday, Tipsarevic will face Wimbledon finalist and World No. 7 Berdych. Tipsarevic has a 2-0 record against Top 10 players this season, including an upset win over World No. 9 Andy Roddick at the US Open.
Berdych, who made a surprising first-round exit at Flushing Meadows, missed the Czech Republic’s quarter-final away tie against Chile – held the week after his run to the Wimbledon final. Stepanek also missed the tie with a left knee injury, leaving Jan Hajek and Ivo Minar to carry the banner for the 2009 finalists.
“The quarter-final, the two other guys from the team played the No. 1 and No. 2 in their spots and they won pretty easily, so it just showed that our team is pretty strong,” said Berdych. “We’re back with Radek and we just try to win the three points.”
The Czech Republic has contested the Davis Cup final three times and won the title in 1980.