Davis Cup - France-USA on the Monte-Carlo Clay Courts

2/28/2012  Sport

The French Federation has confirmed the place and the surface for the quarter final of the Davis Cup between France and the United States on 6, 7 and 8 April 2012.

First Davis Cup for France in Monaco
For the first time in its history, the French Davis Cup team will compete on the Monte-Carlo clay courts, where the Masters 1000 is held each year (this will take place the following weekend).  This decision will please the players and staff, who were hoping that the quarter-final matches with the United States (from 6 to 8 April) would take place on the open-air clay courts.  This will also be the first home game for Guy Forget since the semi-final with Argentina in Lyon in 2010 (five matches).

The Davis Cup – a week before the Rolex Masters
A week before the Masters 1000, the Monte Carlo Country Club in Roquebrune, Cap Martin in the Alpes Maritimes, close to the Principality of Monaco, will host the Davis Cup.  None of the towns on the shortlist, i.e. Nimes, Nancy and Pau, were selected by the French Tennis Federation.  However, France has shown a definite preference for clay courts.  Last year, three French players competed in the quarter finals in Monte-Carlo:  Gaëls Monfils, Richard Gasquet and Gilles Simon.  Gasquet had previously been a semi-finalist there in 2005, after beating Roger Federer, who was No. 1 at the time.  Clay was probably the best surface for Monfils, although Jo Wilfried Tsonga didn't seem completely at ease.

Previous Score

In the previous round, the Americans beat the Swiss 5-0 on the same surface.  Mardy Fish won his match against Stanislas Wawrinka and John Isner beat Roger Federer.  In the tournament, Fish and Isner have never gone further than the third round at Roland-Garros and they have both had more defeats than victories on clay.  Mardy Fish has only played on the Côte d'Azur once, in 2003, when he lost to Gustavo Kuerten in the first round.  John Isner has never played there.  Moreover, the French have notched up a total of five wins and only one defeat against the United States on this surface, during the final in 1982.  If they win again, "les Bleus" will play host to Spain or Austria in the semi final.  The matches will take place in Monte-Carlo (10,000 seats on the center court), on open-air clay courts, as the staff had hoped.
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