The Sears Centre Arena in Chicago, Illinois has been announced as the venue for the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas World Group Play-off tie between United States and Slovakia taking place on 12-14 September.
The multi-purpose arena, built in 2006 and located 25 miles northwest of Chicago, will be hosting a Davis Cup tie for the first time. In fact, the competition will be going back to the state of Illinois for the first time in 86 years, USA having defeated Japan 5-0 in the America Final there in 1928.
USA will be looking to remain in the World Group after their loss in the first round against Great Britain in February. The Americans have played continuously in the World Group for the last 25 years since returning to the top tier in 1989.
Slovakia recorded easy wins over Latvia and Austria this year in Europe/Africa Group I to make its bid for promotion to the World Group. The Europeans haven’t played at the highest level of Davis Cup since their relegation to zonal competition in 2006.
The head-to-head for this play-off favours the hosts, the Americans having won their only two previous occasions match-ups. In 2002 USA defeated Slovakia 5-0 in the first round of the World Group played in Oklahoma; their most recent meeting was in 2003 in a similar World Group play-off situation. In that tie, held in Bratislava, the Americans claimed a 3-2 victory.