United States, Australia set for second Davis Cup showdown in two years

The United States and Australia will be squaring off in the Davis Cup competition for the second time in as many years when they collide again during quarterfinal action this week. Interestingly, it will be the second consecutive contest between the two nations that is being held in Australia.

This agreement dates back to the late 1990s, when the Americans and the Australians played two straight Davis Cup ties in the United States. After facing each other in 1997, they met again in the U.S.A. two years later when the ITF staged a tie at the Longwood Cricket Club in Chestnut Hills, Mass.–the site of the first-ever Davis Cup tie–as a 100th anniversary celebration. Now the two countries are playing twice in a row in Australia.

Last season, Team USA went into Melbourne and prevailed 3-1 in a first-round contest on grass. John Isner won both of his singles matches for the Americans, first over Sam Groth and then the clincher two days later at the expense of Bernard Tomic. Bob and Mike Bryan prevailed in a five-set doubles rubber over Lleyton Hewitt and John Peers.

Both teams will look different this time around. The Bryan brothers have retired from Davis Cup, so the Americans have four traditional singles players at their disposal–all of whom are also capable on the doubles court. Joining Isner this week are Jack Sock, Sam Querrey, and Steve Johnson. For the Aussies, Hewitt is now a non-competing captain and Bernard Tomic is A.W.O.L. Peers is scheduled to play doubles with Groth, while Nick Kyrgios and Jordan Thompson will carry the singles mantle.

This week’s tie is being held on the hard courts of Brisbane at Patrick Rafter Arena.

“Everything’s going really well at the moment–according to plan,” Hewitt said of his squad. “Obviously, guys (are) coming in at different times and (I’m) trying to manage everyone individually, but I couldn’t be happier at the moment with how the boys are jelling together. Obviously, a guy like Nick’s played a lot of matches, so it’s about just keeping that momentum and rhythm. He’s hitting the ball really well. We feel comfortable where he’s at, and the other boys have hardly put a foot wrong since we’ve [been] here.”

“We got five tough matches in front of us,” American captain Jim Courier assured. “We’re here, ready to battle. We know they’re ready to battle, too, but we had a fun time with them last year battling at Kooyong. It’s another opportunity here at Rafter Arena. We’re ready.”

Team USA has played against Australia more times than any country in its Davis Cup history, holding a 26-20 all-time record in a rivalry that dates back to 1905.

6 Comments on United States, Australia set for second Davis Cup showdown in two years

  1. I think it will come down to the doubles match and whoever Courier decides to play. Know one of the players will be Sock, don’t know the other. Jordan will probably be defeated twice, not sure who can stop Nick. But I’ve seen lots of upsets, so anything can and will happen. Ought to be interesting. Go USA!!!

  2. Agree that it will come down to the doubles. If I were captain I’d save Sock for the doubles rather than sending him up against Kyrgios. Give Nick his two and focus on winning the rest. But it’s Davis Cup. Anything can happen and probably will.

  3. 3-2 USA probably. Although they don’t have the Bryans in doubles. I still think USA will win and it’ll probably come down to dubs. However, a win for the Aussies wouldn’t surprise me.

  4. Don’t know if it’s true or not, but just saw the draw, Isner and Sock playing singles, Querrey and Johnson playing doubles. Thought for sure Sock would be playing doubles.

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