Israel to play Belgium in Davis Cup

Seen as good draw for Israel that keeps hope alive for remaining in the Davis Cup World Group.

By
April 11, 2013 05:23
Dudi Sela

dudi sela370. (photo credit: Reuters)

Israel’s hopes of remaining in the Davis Cup World Group were handed a boost on Wednesday when the national team was drawn to visit Belgium in the playoffs in September.

Spain, Switzerland and Germany were all potential opponents for the unseeded Israel, but the blue-and-white avoided the big guns in the draw in London and will look to maintain its World Group status by beating Belgium over the weekend of September 13-15.

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The Belgians have two top-100 players in veteran Xavier Malisse (50) and rising star David Goffin (65). However, Malisse hasn’t played for the team since September 2011, leaving Steve Darcis (108), Ruben Bemelmans (140) and Olivier Rochus (142) to shoulder the burden.

In last year’s playoffs, Israel defeated Japan 3-2 on the road before suffering its first Davis Cup whitewash since 2004 in February, being pummeled 5-0 by the powerful France.

With the second day of the tie scheduled for Yom Kippur, the Israel Tennis Association will approach the ITF requesting that the encounter start a day early or be extended by a day as it will not be able to play on September 14.


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