– Peter Polansky to open the tie for Canada on Friday followed by Denis Shapovalov
– Marin Cilic will not be playing tomorrow for Croatia
– Matches to be broadcast on Sportsnet
The official draw for the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas World Group first round tie between Canada and Croatia was held on Thursday to determine the match-ups for the upcoming weekend’s action. Canada and Croatia will square off on an indoor clay court at Sportska Dvorana Gradski Vrt in Osijek from February 2 to 4, with the winner advancing to the World Group quarter-finals and the losing nation having to compete in a World Group play-off tie to maintain their place in the World Group for 2019.
The Canadian Davis Cup team consisting of Frank Dancevic (Niagara Falls), the playing captain, Daniel Nestor (Toronto), Peter Polansky (Thornhill, ON), Vasek Pospisil (Vancouver) and Denis Shapovalov (Richmond Hill, ON) will take on Croatia in two singles matches on Friday, a doubles match on Saturday, and two reverse singles matches on Sunday. This is Dancevic’s first tie as the Davis Cup captain for Canada.
Polansky and Shapovalov were selected by Dancevic to play in singles, while Croatian team captain Zeljko Krajan nominated Borna Coric, world no. 47, and Viktor Galovic, world no. 181. The doubles teams will be Nestor and Pospisil for Canada, and Ivan Dodig and Franko Skugor for Croatia.
Today’s draw produced the following weekend match-ups:
|Event||Representing Canada||Representing Croatia|
|1st Singles Rubber – Friday, February 2 – 8 a.m. ET||Peter Polansky (world no. 141)||Borna Coric (world no. 47)|
|2nd Singles Rubber – Friday, February 2||Denis Shapovalov (world no. 48)||Viktor Galovic (world no. 181)|
|Doubles Rubber – Saturday, February 3 – 8 a.m. MT||Daniel Nestor (world no. 60) / Vasek Pospisil (world no. 266 in doubles)||Ivan Dodig (world no. 8) / Franko Skugor (world no. 38)|
|3rd Singles Rubber – Sunday, February 4 – 8 a.m. ET||Denis Shapovalov (world no. 48)||Borna Coric (world no. 47)|
|4th Singles Rubber – Sunday, February 4||Peter Polansky (world no. 141)||Viktor Galovic (world no. 181)|
“It was a tough decision to put Peter instead of Vasek. Vasek is coming off a long week of playing on hard court and has had little time to recover and prepare for this tie,” explained Dancevic. “He also lost a day of preparation because of a virus. Peter had a more ideal preparation so we thought this would be the best decision for the team. Peter has been playing great tennis and is excited for this opportunity.”
A victory would see Canada progress to the quarter-finals and take on the winner between Switzerland and Kazakhstan in April, while a loss would send the nation to a World Group play-off tie in September to maintain its place in the World Group for 2019. Team Canada is competing in the prestigious World Group for a seventh straight year in 2018, a Canadian record, having reached the semi-finals in 2013 and the quarter-finals in 2015.
The opening singles match will take place at 8 a.m. ET on Friday, February 2 and will be followed by another singles match. The doubles match will take place Saturday, February 3 at 8 a.m. ET and the remaining two singles matches will be on Sunday, February 4 at 8 a.m. ET. All matches are best-of-five sets. If the tie has already been decided before the final day, only one best-of-three sets match will be played.
The matches will be broadcast on Sportsnet. Schedule is below.
Photos courtesy: Kyle Clapham