Great Britain v Japan
This will probably be the toughest duel with Andy Murray and Kei Nishikori battling for their home countries. Both of the players need to practice before the American Masters events and the first round of the Davis Cup couldn’t have come at a better time. It’s hard to pick up the eventual winner in this pair but the Brits look more profitable, considering their top doubles players. The second day of the tie should be very entertaining. Kyle Edmund has all chances to lose either to Taro Daniel or Yoshihito Nishioka. Shall it happens, the rivalry Murray – Nishikori will be very hot!
Serbia v Kazakhstan
The Serbian team is a deserved favorite of the pair. Novak Djokovic and Viktor Troicki will lead Serbia to the next round and, who knows it, to the second ever Davis Cup title. Eventually, Novak got a support to rely on. But it won’t be an easy walk. Historically Kazakhstan performs very well in the Davis Cup matches. Mikhail Kukushkin, Aleksandr Nedovesov and Andrey Golubev can make a splash on Belgrade courts.
Italy v Switzerland
Unfortunately, we won’t see top players battling on courts this time. Roger Federer, Stan Wawrinka and Fabio Fognini has given more priority to the Olympics and dropped the Davis Cup out. What makes things worse for the Swiss is the surface. The matches will be played on clay. So this time Italy is a clear favorite. Pablo Lorenzi, Andreas Seppi and Simone Bolelli should move Italy to the next round.
Poland v Argentina
It took Poland eight years to appear in the Davis Cup. Now the aim is to beat Argentina, which is not an easy task. Jerzy Janowicz and Lukasz Kubot are far from their best form. But honestly speaking, Argentina, who has competed in the Davis Cup for the last fifteen years, is not the most difficult opponent. The match will be on indoors hard and even for their Argentina’s leader Leonardo Mayer it will be a great challenge. Taking into account that the tie will be held in Poland the winning chances of the both team are more or less equal.
France v Canada
After Milos Raonic has withdrawn from Canada’s Davis Cup tie against France this rivalry became completely uninteresting. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Gael Monfils, Richard Gasquet and Gilles Simon will easily move France further. What is more, the matches are to be played on clay. Five nails will be hit to the Canada’s coffin. The most they can do is try to gain at least one victory.
Germany v Czech Republic
Logically, Czech Republic is the favorite, but frankly speaking Germany looks better right now. Up-and-coming Alexandr Zverev is in a very bright form. Philipp Kohlschreiber will put much effort into his country’s win as well. The Germans tend to perform especially well on their native courts. Of course, Tomas Berdych will dictate his play in both matches, but the young Zverev has already proved it that he can apply pressure on his top rival. But the rest of the matches and the doubles should end in Germany’s favor. The only questionably player is Radek Stepanek, but Dotennis doesn’t have much credit to him.
Australia v USA
The favorite in this tie is unclear. Kyrgios is under question, while Tomic seems to be very competitive. As for John Isner and Jack Sock, the both have not enough playing practice and will hardly show decent tennis. But the Americans have one very dangerous weapon – the service play. And as the matches will be played on grass, it will get even more threatening.
Belgium v Croatia
The Belgium team is underestimated in this rivalry. They have no clear leader but Bemelmans and David Goffin are capable of winning. While Borna Coric may be saving his powers for the Masters tournaments and the Croat’s No.1 Marin Cilic has showed very disputable performance in Acapulco.
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