Between the format change and the COVID craziness, it has been a very long time because the Davis Cup was in a position to run something resembling a traditional schedule.
However in 2022, we lastly get to expertise the boys’s World Cup of Tennis in a extra regular manner.
Earlier than the Finals are performed within the fall, the sector must be established which is what goes down this week with the Davis Cup playoffs, together with the 2019 finalists seeking to get again to the massive present.
Right here’s what you have to know.
What to Watch: Canada taking up Netherlands, Fernandez title defence
If Canada’s victory on the ATP Cup left you wanting extra crew tennis, your wait is over.
Workforce Canada offered by Sobeys is again in motion this week with a spot on the Davis Cup Finals on the road as they journey to the Netherlands for the Davis Cup playoffs.
The Canadian crew is led by Davis Cup veterans Brayden Schnur, Steven Diez, and Peter Polansky, all of whom had been on the crew for final fall’s Finals. The trio are joined by Alexis Galarneau, who might be making his Davis Cup debut for Canada.
Schnur and Diez had been each members of Canada’s ATP Cup-winning squad in January.
Canada can have their palms full with a robust Dutch crew enjoying on residence soil. US Open quarter-finalist Botic van de Sandschulp leads the opposition together with world No. 57 Tallon Griekspoor.
The Dutch crew additionally options veteran Robin Haase and doubles specialists Wesley Koolhof and Matwe Middlekoop.
This would be the fifth assembly between Canada and the Netherlands in Davis Cup motion. Canada leads the head-to-head 3-1, with the newest assembly coming lower than 4 years in the past within the 2018 playoffs. Haase and Middlekoop are the one members of both crew who competed in that 2018 tie, received 3-1 by Canada in Toronto.
The house crew has received three of the earlier 4 conferences. Canada received within the Netherlands of their first ever assembly again in 1969. The hosts have received each assembly since.
This tie might be performed on indoor clay in The Hague. Play begins on Friday at 2 pm native time, 8 am EST. There might be two singles matches on Friday, adopted by two singles matches and a doubles match on Sunday, beginning at 1 pm native, 7 am EST.
There are 12 playoff ties happening around the globe this week with spots on the 2022 Davis Cup Finals on the road. The winners will advance to the finals, whereas the losers whereas should play in one other playoff within the fall.
New Expertise for Fernandez
This week will mark a primary for Canada’s Leylah Annie Fernandez, as the teenager must defend a title for the primary time in her profession on the Abierto GNP Seguros in Monterrey, Mexico.
Fernandez defeated Viktorija Golubic in straight units to win her maiden title in Monterrey final 12 months.
In her title defence, the Canadian is the highest-ranked participant within the draw after prime seed Elina Svitolina withdrew. She’s going to meet Anna Karolina Schmiedlova within the first spherical. Fernandez is in the identical quarter of the draw as final week’s Guadalajara champion Sloane Stephens, seeded seventh, and the identical half as third seed Madison Keys.
This can solely be Fernandez’s third occasion of 2022 and her first since shedding within the first spherical of the Australian Open in January.
It will likely be a household affair for the Fernandez’s in Mexico, as Leylah is enjoying doubles together with her sister Bianca. They’re dealing with the highest seeds Ingrid Neel and Elixane Lechmia is the primary spherical.
In Case You Missed It: Nadal dampens Medvedev’s historic week
Feb. 1, 2004.
Paul Martin was lower than two months into his time period as Prime Minister of Canada. “The Butterfly Impact” was the primary movie on the field workplace. The Toronto Maple Leafs had reached the second spherical of the playoffs in 4 of the earlier 5 seasons and would once more a number of months later.
It was additionally the final day the place a person not named Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, or Andy Murray was ranked No. 1 on the ATP Tour.
That run of 6601 days ended on Monday when Daniil Medvedev ascended to the highest spot.
The Russian was in a position to climb atop the mountain when Novak Djokovic, who was competing in his first occasion of 2022, was upset within the quarter-finals of Dubai by Jiri Vesely, who’s now an ideal 2-0 towards the Serb, assuring that Medvedev would take over at No. 1 whatever the Russian’s personal end in Acapulco.
Medvedev is the third Russian man to succeed in the highest spot and retains Europe’s streak at No. 1 alive. Andy Roddick, who was usurped by Federer on Feb. 2, 2004, stays the final non-European man to be ranked No. 1.
Nevertheless, it was factor for Medvedev that his new career-high rating was assured by Djokovic’s defeat, as he was unable to shut the deal himself in Acapulco, the place he was overwhelmed by the person who may turn out to be his greatest challenger for the highest spot early this season.
In contrast to the ultimate in Melbourne, Nadal got here out firing and creamed Medvedev in a straight-set semi-final earlier than happening to win the title, already his third of 2022. The Spaniard is undefeated up to now this season and has received a career-high 15 straight matches to start out the season.
In the meantime in Dubai, Vesely backed up his win over Djokovic by outlasting Denis Shapovalov in a three-hour, three-tiebreak semi-final earlier than he ran out of magic towards Andrey Rublev within the last, who received his second title in as many weeks.
Świątek continues finals dominance
As typical, the ability dynamic on the ladies’s aspect stays unfold out, as seen on the first WTA 1000 occasion of the season.
The Qatar Open lived as much as its billing and the highest stars got here to play, with six of the highest eight seeds reaching the quarter-finals, together with two in-form decrease seeds.
When the mud settled, it was Iga Świątek holding the trophy, her second WTA 1000 title, having defeated the red-hot Anett Kontaveit in a blowout last.
Świątek, who beat prime seed Aryna Sabalenka and sixth seed Maria Sakkari on her technique to the ultimate, beat Kontaveit 6-2, 6-0. These two video games within the first set are the one two video games the Pole has misplaced in WTA 1000 finals, as she received her earlier last in Rome 6-0, 6-0. Actually, Świątek has now received 4 consecutive finals, dropping 5 video games or much less in all of them.
In different motion, Stephens received her first title since 2018 in Guadalajara, whereas Spaniard Pedro Martinez received his first profession title on the Chile Open.
Below the Radar
There have been a few shut calls on the decrease excursions final week.
Vasek Pospisil very practically picked up his second ATP Challenger title of the 12 months, taking the primary set of the ultimate earlier than in the end falling to Quentin Halys in Pau, France.
On the junior circuit, Annabelle Xu reached the ultimate of the JA event in Criciuma, Brazil, one of many greatest finals of her younger profession.
Carol Zhao, Steven Diez, and Filip Peliwo all reached ITF quarter-finals.
With the Davis Cup happening, the main focus is on the Canadian ladies this week on the ITF tour, together with Billie Jean King Cup crew members Rebecca Marino and Carol Zhao competing.
You possibly can comply with the Canadians in motion each week here.