- Chris Sobey
The first round of 2016 Davis Cup World Group got underway in the early hours of this morning with Australia hosting the USA at the Kooyong Lawn Tennis club in Melbourne. Even though the Aussies were on home soil and playing on their favoured surface grass, the USA were chalked up as favourites to progress to the second round as the Aussies had lost Nick Kyrgios in the build-up.
The Aussies still seem to have a strong team based on the surface while Isner has never been particularly successful on grass outside the USA or in the Davis Cup in general and Jack Sock has little experience on the surface. At the time of writing Tomic was favourite to beat Jack Sock and by the time you read this I expect him to have won that rubber, while Isner was a strong favourite to beat Groth. However with both players serves being their strongest asset and the surface suiting Groth more than Isner their match could be close than the odds suggest.
Great Britain’s tie against Japan at the Barclay Card Arena in Birmingham gets underway at 1pm today and is live on BBC 2. The Brits lost Kyle Edmunds in the build up to injury and he has been replaced by Dan Evans, who is currently ranked in the 150’s. With Murray returning after a long break and Edmunds missing this tie looks even tougher for GB now.
On paper it looks like the singles rubbers will end one all after Friday. GB look a safe bet for the doubles on Saturday with Jamie Murray and Dominic Inglot a strong pairing and it looks like the tie will be determined by the singles rubbers on Saturday, which could easily go either way, even if Murray plays Nishikori first as the Japanese star is more than capable of beating Murray on his day.
Serbia, France, Croatia and Italy look like safe bets to progress to the second round, while the ties between Poland and Argentina and Germany and the Czech Republic are tough ones to call.
At the time of writing it’s great to see the British tennis girls doing the business on the WTA Tour.
At the time of writing Naomi Broady was through to the quarter finals at Kuala Lumpur and will face her sternest test so far this week against third seed Sabine Lisicki this afternoon.
At Monterrey, Mexico both Heather Watson and fourth seed Joanna Konta were through to the quarter finals. Konta has a great chance of progressing to the semi-finals against Flipkens, while Watson was waiting to discover if she will play second seed Caroline Wozniacki or the unseeded Lucic-Baroni.