The 2010 Davis Cup starts in earnest next month and the expected challengers for the title can all be expected to make comfortable progress to the second round. Numerous top players are struggling with injuries, which gives an advantage to the teams with greater strength in depth compared to those reliant on one elite player.
Spain, aiming for a third consecutive title, are without Rafael Nadal for their home tie with Switzerland, but the reigning champions will cope better than their opponents, who are without Roger Federer. Spain have three top 30 players in their squad and they should win easily against a team over-reliant on Stanislas Wawrinka.
United States have won the Davis Cup only once since 1995 and the third seeds have a good opportunity to end their barren run this time around. Doubles stars Bob and Mike Bryan should give them the edge against Serbia, but Novak Djokovic leads a strong Serb team that includes Nenad Zimonjic, the second highest ranked doubles player in the world.
Second seeds Czech Republic, featuring top singles players Radek Stepanek and Tomas Berdych and doubles specialist Lukas Dlouhy, should deal easily with Belgium and show they are capable of reaching a second consecutive final.
Russia will start as favourites with most Betting Online experts against India, but the potential absence of the injured Nikolay Davydenko could leave them exposed to the threat of a team that can rely on a win from in-form doubles pair Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupathi.
The other four ties are harder to predict. Israel have greater strength in depth than Chile, but Fernando Gonzalez should win two rubbers. Robin Soderling carries Sweden in a similar fashion and Argentina might struggle to win the necessary three rubbers.
Gael Monfils and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga’s France appear to be stronger than Germany and Tennis Betting suggests that home advantage should help them reach the last eight. Croatia and Ecuador meet for the first time and Marin Cilic and Ivo Karlovic can be expected to fire their team to the quarter finals against a team that struggles away from home.