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Old 04-13-2004, 04:34 PM   #1
country flag Aleksa's Laydee
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Default Davis Cup

Great Britain have been drawn away to Austria in the Davis Cup World Group play-offs in September.
The British team, spearheaded by Tim Henman and Greg Rusedski, reached the qualifying stage with a comfortable 4-1 win over Luxembourg last weekend.

And they avoided a tricky tie against Germany, Australia or Russia.

The winners of the match, which is due to take place from 24-26 September, will progress to the knock-out stages of next year's competition.


The losers will be relegated to zonal qualification groups.

WORLD GROUP PLAY-OFFS
Australia v Morocco
Chile v Japan
Croatia v Belgium
Paraguay v Czech Republic
Slovak Republic v Germany
Austria v Great Britain
Romania v Canada
Russia v Thailand


In other ties, Australia will host Morocco, Germany will travel to Slovakia and Russia have a home meeting with Thailand.

Japan face a trip to Chile, Croatia host Belgium, Paraguay are at home to the Czech Republic and Canada travel to Romania.

Britain won their last Davis Cup meeting against Austria in Manchester in 1991, when current captain Jeremy Bates contributed two points in a 3-1 victory.

Austria currently have two players ranked in the top 100.

Jurgen Melzer, 59th in the ATP entry rankings, beat Henman in round two of the Nasdaq-100 Open last month.

They are certainly beatable, especially since we can play at home

Austria captain Thomas Muster
Stefan Koubek, who won in Doha last year, is ranked 89th.

Austria reached the semi-finals in 1990 but have struggled since the retirement of former world number one Thomas Muster.

Muster replaced Gunter Bresnik as team captain following Austria's first-round loss to the United States in February.

"Britain are certainly beatable, especially since we can play at home," he said.

"We are trying to turn things round again after our drought in the late 90s. And the Davis Cup is one big chance to do so."

Speaking before the draw, Henman said he was confident Britain could progress.

"We have qualified for the World Group on maybe three or four occasions and we have lost every time," he told BBC Sport.

"It's a big incentive for us just to try and win a match and we have got a good chance of doing that this time.

"If we're fit and healthy then we will fancy our chances."
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