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www.daviscup.com

08 September 2011

Pre-tie analysis: Serbia v Argentina


NEWS ARTICLE

Novak Djokovic (SRB) and Juan Martin del Potro (ARG)


Serbia and Argentina go head-to-head in the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas World Group semifinals, with a place in the final at stake. The tie is being held at the Belgrade Arena in the Serbian capital Belgrade on 16-18 September.


Road to semifinals

Serbia comprehensively won 4-1 against a weakened Swedish side that was missing its No. 1 player Robin Soderling. Viktor Troicki and Janko Tipsarevic won their singles matches on the opening day but needed to wait until Sunday to get the third and definitive point when Tipsarevic defeated Michael Ryderstedt in straight sets.

 

Argentina completed a perfect performance against Kazakhstan at the Parque Roca in Buenos Aires. The South Americans whitewashed their transoceanic rivals 5-0 to secure a place in the semifinals for the second consecutive year. Juan Monaco, Juan Martin del Potro and the doubles pair Chela/Schwank earned the first three points that secured the victory.


Team leaders

Novak Djokovic

Djokovic is having his best ever season by far. The Serb started the year by winning the Australian Open and completing a historic 42-match unbeaten run that was only ended by an inspired Roger Federer at Roland Garros. Then, the 24-year-old went on to win at Wimbledon and take the No. 1 spot for the first time in his career.

Juan Martin del Potro

The 2009 US Open winner seems to be recovering his best form after missing the 2010 season due to a wrist injury. “Delpo” is a hard court specialist and has declared that he will be fully fit and rested for the tie, a factor that could be crucial if Novak Djokovic arrives in Belgrade with little time to prepare the tie.


Captains

Bogdan Obradovic

The Serbian skipper took charge back in September 2007 and has since then become an iconic figure of Serbian tennis. Obradovic has managed to build a competitive team over the years and is responsible for winning the first high-profile trophy of his country.

Tito Vazquez

The experienced Vazquez is currently in his second stint as Argentina’s captain, having originally served as skipper during the 1980s. His current spell started in 2009 and his best performance came last year when he guided the team to the semifinals. He’s also been captain of Argentina’s Fed Cup team in the past.


Keep an eye on...

Nenad Zimonjic

The 35-year-old doubles specialist is the most experienced player of the Serbian team. Zimonjic has an amazing 24/9 doubles record in Davis Cup and the ability to be competitive playing alongside any of the members of the team. In Obradovic’s words, “Nenad gives a special harmony to the group.”

David Nalbandian

“King David” has been in and out of competition over the last year after a series of injuries. However, in the run-up to this tie, the Argentine has been able to compete in several consecutive tournaments that have seen his form improve significantly. His die-hard attitude could make the difference in Belgrade.


Davis Cup pedigree

Serbia

The Serbs are the current champions of the competition. Serbia made its Davis Cup debut as an independent nation in 2007, having competed as Serbia & Montenegro from 2004 to 2006 and as Yugoslavia from 1927 to 2003.

Argentina

Argentina’s Davis Cup history is a case of so close yet so far. The nation is one of only three, alongside Romania and India, to have reached more than one final without being crowned champion, having finished runner-up in 1981, 2006 and 2008.



Head-to-head

1 - 0

 

The only previous meeting between the two nations dates back to 1964 and it was won by Serbia, but this tie came when the Serbian players were competing under the flag of Yugoslavia.


Surface

Hard indoor

 

Serbia won its first Davis Cup title on this surface and Bogdan Obradovic has made it clear that this court is perfect for them. Although Juan Martin del Potro and David Nalbandian can be considered hard court specialists, the same cannot be said about Juan Monaco and Juan Ignacio Chela, making the surface an advantage for the Serbs.


Home and away

Serbia

The Serbian Davis Cup team has won the seven home ties that the country has hosted since becoming an independent nation in 2007.

Argentina

The Argentineans have played four away ties in the last two years that resulted in two victories (Russia and Sweden) and two defeats (France and Czech Republic).

 
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