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25 May 2011

Murray commits to GB tie


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Photo: Tommy HindleyAndy Murray (GBR)

World No. 4 Andy Murray has confirmed he will play in Great Britain’s clash with Luxembourg in the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas Europe/Africa Zone Group II second round on 8-10 July. The tie is being held on home soil for the Scot at Glasgow’s Braehead Arena.

Murray, who took a year off from Davis Cup in 2010, was asked at a Roland Garros press conference whether he would be available for selection, and he responded “I’m playing for sure, yeah, 100 per cent.”

That will be music to the ears of GB captain Leon Smith, who coached Murray as a junior, while his opposite number Jacques Radoux now faces an even steeper uphill battle if he is to guide his team to an upset against the higher ranked Brits.

Radoux relies heavily on the services of Gilles Muller, as world No. 995 Mike Vermeer is the only other player from Luxembourg with a ranking. At No. 121, former US Open quarterfinalist Muller is currently 62 places below his career high, which he achieved in 2005.

“I know Gilles very well,” said Murray. “I used to practice with him a lot in Barcelona, used to get on very well with him. He plays well on indoor hard courts. I think it's a match that we should definitely win. If we don't, I'd be very disappointed, but he's gonna make it difficult because he's a tough player. He has a good serve and plays well indoors.”

James Ward will probably line up as second singles player for the hosts, while Smith has a wealth of doubles options at his disposal. Murray’s elder brother Jamie is the British No. 1, but there are currently seven Brits ranked inside the doubles Top 100.

Great Britain reached the second round with a 4-1 home win over Tunisia, and Luxembourg progressed by triumphing 3-2 away against Ireland. The winner of this tie will meet either Belarus or Hungary in the promotion play-offs in September.

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