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21 May 2013

Hosts handed tough draw in Europe III


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San Marino, the hosts of Davis Cup by BNP Paribas Europe Zone Group III, have been drawn into a tough pool. They will be up against Georgia and Armenia in Pool C. Georgia are one of the strongest teams in the group, boasting three players with a ranking.

They will, however, have the option to call upon Davis Cup Commitment Award winner Domenico Vicini. The 41-year-old has competed in a record 87 ties in a Davis Cup career which first began in 1993, and he has been nominated as playing captain for the host nation.

The other nation boasting three players with a ranking is Greece, who have been drawn in Pool A alongside Montenegro and Liechtenstein. Liechtenstein are building for the future, having named a team full of new players who have an average age of under 18.

Turkey were the only team to be relegated to Europe III from last year’s Europe/Africa Zone Group II and they will be looking to make a swift return to Group II. However, they have been drawn in Pool D, and so will have to contend with Macedonia, Albania and Azerbaijan.

Pool B will see Norway, Malta and Iceland all fighting to finish top and earn their chance at promotion, and, with no players in the group possessing an ATP ranking, there is all to play for.

It is very much a family affair in San Marino this year. Armenia have two brothers, Khachatur and Sedrak Khachatryan, both nominated and Montenegro have nominated twins Ivan and Igor Saveljic.

It is not only siblings, however, who are competing together this week. Iceland have nominated father and son pair Rafn Kumar Bonifacius and Raj Kumar Bonifacius as their top two players and Greece have nominated Markos Kalovelonis, while George Kalovelonis, Markos' father, is their captain.

 
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