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Djokovic trains in Malaga ahead of his country's Davis Cup campaign Marilú Báez
World number one Novak Djokovic stands in the way of Great Britain at Davis Cup in Malaga
Tennis

World number one Novak Djokovic stands in the way of Great Britain at Davis Cup in Malaga

The British have been set a daunting task in the quarter finals of the round-robin tennis tournament in the city, faced with a star-studded Serbian lineup led by the 24-time grand slam champion

Anthony Piovesan

Malaga

Wednesday, 22 November 2023

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A spirited Great Britain team will be looking to upset a strong Serbia side which is being led by world number one Novak Djokovic at the Davis Cup tennis tournament in Malaga on Thursday (23 November).

The British desire to lift the trophy for the first time since 2015 was dealt a major blow when two of the team's best players pulled out due to injury in the lead up to the round-robin tournament, dubbed the ‘World Cup of tennis’. Former world number one Andy Murray was forced out after suffering a season-ending shoulder injury while training for the Davis Cup. It snuffed out any possibility of a titanic clash of two world number ones - one former and one current - with Murray initially scheduled to go head-to-head with Djokovic.

Dan Evans, who played the most important role in Great Britain’s progression to the final eight, also withdrew from the competition due to a calf injury. World number 18 Cameron Norrie will lead the Brits, alongside strong singles duo Jack Draper and Liam Broady. They will be joined by doubles specialists Neal Skupski and Joe Salisbury, who are both ranked inside the world’s top ten in doubles.

The Serbian team, with Medjedovic, Kecmanovic, Djokovic, Troicki (captain), Djere and Lajovic.
The Serbian team, with Medjedovic, Kecmanovic, Djokovic, Troicki (captain), Djere and Lajovic. EFE

Draper will look to continue his hot run of form after he matched Andy Murray’s feat of becoming the youngest Brit to reach an ATP-tour-level final at the age of 21. The young talent from Sutton lost in the final of the Sofia Open in Bulgaria earlier this month against Frenchman Adrian Mannarino.

But the Brits will need to outrun a star-studded Serbian lineup, led by 24-time grand slam champion Novak Djokovic, who are chasing their first Davis Cup title since 2010. The star player is fresh of a victory after claiming the Nitto ATP World Championships in Turin last week. The 33rd ranked player in the world Laslo Djere will also be a threat in the singles. They’re joined by Dusan Lajovic, Miomir Kecmanovic and Hamad Medjedovic.

The victorious country will progress to the semi-finals and play the winner of Thursday morning’s tie between Italy and Netherlands.

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