Davis Cup marks return of top-class tennis at Ellis Park

2009-09-18 09:28

THE Davis Cup World Group play-off between South Africa and India

beginning on Friday, will mark the return of top class tennis to Ellis Park for

the first time in a decade.

The official draw was announced at the Ellis Park Indoor Arena on

Thursday by tournament referee Andrew Jarrett.

The local squad comprises of Rik de Voest, Izak van der Merwe,

Wesley Moodie, Jeff Coetzee and Raven Klaasen.

The Indian Tennis Federation have named Mahesh Bhupathi, Rohan

Bopanna, Somdev Devvarman and Yuki Bhambri. Leander Paes withdrew due to


Ellis Park last staged prestigious events such as the SA Open, the

ATP Tour World Doubles Championships and Davis Cup ties.

Following a poor turnout for the Euro-Africa Group One tie against

Belarus at Arthur Ashe Centre in Soweto in May, the South African Tennis

Association (Sata) bowed to pressure from some sections of the local media to

change the venue.

Subsequently, Sata has also launched other initiatives by offering

free tickets to schools ahead of the three-day tournament.

The choice of venue also coincided with a special request by the

South African players to play at altitude.

A victory by South Africa will put them in the World Group of the

Davis Cup.

The hosts are expected to emulate the success of 1994 when South

Africa defeated India in Jaipur to earn their place in the World Group.

South African last lifted the 1974 Davis Cup title, although the

feat was attained by default after India refused to play the final, citing South

Africa’s apartheid regime.

The Ellis Park tournament, which is sponsored by the City of

Johannesburg’s community development division, will end on Sunday.

The draw: DAY 1
2nd Singles (1pm):
De Voest vs Bopanna DAY 2
Doubles (12pm):
Coetzee/Moodie vs Bhupati/Bopanna DAY 3
3rd Singles:
De Voest vs Devvarman DAY 4
4th Singles:
Van der Merwe vs Bopanna

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