- Texas man arrested for powder-letter hoax
- Islamic State opens ‘marriage bureau’ for single jihadists
- Drone almost blocks California firefighting planes
- Tornado rips off roofs, downs trees near Boston
- GOP: Environmental rules keeping agents from accessing border
- John Kerry: Millions displaced by religious fighting in 2013
- Federal appeals court rules against Virginia’s gay marriage ban
- White House says Russia ‘losing’ war in Ukraine
- Hamas turns to North Korea for weapons deal, Iran for money
- Syrian casualties surge as jihadis consolidate
Nadal to open for Spain vs France in Davis Cup
Question of the Day
Nadal will face Richard Gasquet on the outdoor clay court in the Los Califas bull ring. Spain is favored to bounce back from last year’s 5-0 loss to France and extend its record run of 19 straight home wins that dates back to 1999.
Nadal lost to Novak Djokovic in New York in four sets on Monday.
“I am a little tired, as is logical and not in tiptop form because I haven’t had much time to train on clay, around 4 1/2 hours,” said Nadal, who has a 9-0 record against Gasquet. “And that is cutting it fine for a game against one of the best players in the world on clay.”
Gasquet had no problem accepting the role of underdog.
“Clearly, last year we were affected by the loss, but we don’t come here looking for revenge,” Spain captain Albert Costa said at Wednesday’s draw. “The loss of Monfils is important because he is very good player on clay, but they have a very good team.”
Spain’s second-ranked player, David Ferrer, takes on Gilles Simon in the second singles match.
France captain Guy Forget made the surprise move of keeping his best player, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, out of the singles. He will play in Saturday’s doubles with Michael Llodra against Fernando Verdasco and Feliciano Lopez.
Tsonga, a Wimbledon semifinalist this year, was expected to play Nadal in a highly anticipated match.
Even with Nadal at less than 100 percent, Spain team enters the series in excellent form. Without Nadal in the quarterfinals, Ferrer and Lopez led their country to its first win on U.S. soil in Austin, Texas.
Costa said temperatures set to reach 98 degrees will play to his team’s strength.
“I think it will be good for our team,” he said. “The ball bounces (more) and we like to play under these conditions.”
By David Keene
Allowing states to innovate could reduce dependency on bureaucracy
- D.C. seeks to stay judge's order allowing gun owners to carry in public
- Illegal immigrants demand representation in White House meetings
- White House says Russia 'losing' war in Ukraine
- Hillary Clinton: Forget Obama, George W. Bush made her 'proud to be an American'
- HAYDEN: Intelligence, evidence and the case against Russia
- Border surge puts Obama legacy on immigration at stake
- Romney would win popular vote in rematch against Obama: CNN poll
- Iraqi Christians rally at White House: 'Obama, Obama, where are you?'
- Report: 40% of weapons sent to Afghanistan are unaccounted for
- KING: "Man-caused disaster" on the southern border
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq