It has been nearly 21 years since Frank Dancevic was concerned in his first Davis Cup tie on dwelling soil. From his debut in 2002 till 2018, together with after his transition to staff captain, he by no means went greater than two years with out enjoying at dwelling.
However as Workforce Canada offered by Sobeys returns to Montreal this weekend for the Davis Cup Qualifiers, it has been 5 years and 5 months because the males’s nationwide staff performed at dwelling.
“It’s superb to be dwelling. We haven’t been right here in Canada in such a very long time, it’s nice to be dwelling,” stated Dancevic in his press convention on Tuesday. “It feels heat to have the help from the Canadians. The fellows are actually excited simply to be right here and to get that feeling of enjoying at dwelling. We don’t get that chance a lot.”
Dancevic was part of Workforce Canada the final time they performed at dwelling again in 2018. The playoff tie in Toronto was his second as staff captain (and first as simply captain, he was player-captain of their World Group first-round tie earlier within the 12 months).
Ever since, Canada has solely performed on the highway, together with highway ties in 2019, 2021, and 2022, in addition to the “impartial website” Finals yearly since 2019 (excluding the COVID-cancelled 2020).
Learn additionally: Meet the Canadian Team Competing in Montreal
Throughout his profession, Dancevic performed 13 dwelling ties. A type of was in Montreal in 2012, which the captain remembered fondly.
“I’ve nothing however nice recollections of the crowds from my enjoying days to the Davis Cups. We performed one time on Centre Courtroom vs South Africa. It’s an incredible place.”
Residence-court benefit is an oft-discussed topic in most sports activities, though it doesn’t issue into tennis as a lot as some others with a tour that strikes across the globe.
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However the captain thinks it’s one thing essential to have.
“You get that additional help and generally in matches, it’s just one or two per cent that may outline the results of the match,” stated Dancevic. “And to have that additional crowd help behind you and understanding that you’ve your nation behind you, it offers you that edge.”
“It’s at all times a pleasure enjoying in entrance of a crowd and understanding you could have your nation behind you.”
Sizing Up Korea
Canada will meet the Republic of Korea for the second time in Davis Cup competitors this weekend. The final time they performed, Canada squeaked out a 2-1 win within the Finals group stage in 2022.
On paper, Canada are the favourites as their prime two singles gamers are each larger ranked than the Korean No. 1. However rankings don’t appear to matter a lot in Davis Cup.
And residential-court benefit will not be as large a deal because it might be. “With this staff specifically, Korea, additionally they like these circumstances. They’re used to those circumstances too,” defined Dancevic. “I wouldn’t say it’s that a lot of a bonus court-wise like towards a South American staff or a staff that’s used to enjoying on clay courts or slower surfaces. On this tie, I really feel like the extent goes to be excessive from our opponents as nicely.”
Learn additionally: Meet the Korean Team Competing in Montreal
Dancevic highlighted Soonwoo Kwon, who is available in because the fourth-ranked Korean down at No. 700 on the earth. However Kwon is a former Prime 100 participant with two ATP Tour titles to his title and has triggered Canada some bother on this competitors earlier than.
“[Kwon] is a superb participant, he’s a harmful participant. Clearly, beating Félix [Auger-Aliassime in 2022] is a large win and he was Prime  participant in order that’s a really excessive degree. He’s enjoying at a excessive degree. We now have to carry out versus him, our guys need to play rather well to win these matches. It’s not straightforward.”
Canada is aware of in addition to any nation that the rankings don’t imply a lot on this competitors from first-hand expertise.
Because the captain was eager to level out, final 12 months within the Finals group stage each Gabriel Diallo and Alexis Galarneau had been ranked exterior the Prime 100 however defeated Top 40 opponents in straight sets to steer Canada to an upset of the eventual champions Italy.
Waiting for this 12 months, with their prime two stars enjoying an ATP 250 occasion in Europe and a few damage query marks, Dancevic may be very assured in his lineup.
“We now have quite a lot of depth, quite a lot of selection. Completely different types of gamers,” defined Dancevic. “We are able to undergo the week, see who’s feeling good, who’s hitting the ball one of the best.”
The draw ceremony, the place captains have to substantiate who’s enjoying, will happen on Thursday.
Tickets are nonetheless accessible for the tie in Montreal. Get your tickets now!