Ostrava, Czech Republic (SportsNetwork.com) - The reigning two-time champion
Czech Republic will face the Netherlands in a best-of-five opening-round Davis
Cup tie this weekend, which will get underway with a rubber between Radek
Stepanek and Robin Haase on Friday.
The heroic Stepanek clinched both Davis Cup titles for the Czechs by winning
fifth and deciding rubbers in the previous two finals.
Stepanek-Haase will be followed Friday by a bout between former Wimbledon
runner-up Tomas Berdych and Dutchman Igor Sijsling. Berdych and Stepanek have
combined to lead the Czechs to two straight titles, including a victory over
Serbia in last year's finale.
Saturday's doubles in Ostrava currently call for a Czech tandem of Lukas Rosol
and Jiri Vesely to take on a Dutch duo of Thiemo de Bakker and Jean-Julien
Rojer, while Sunday's reverse singles pit last week's Australian Open
semifinalist Berdych against Haase and Stepanek versus Sijsling.
The tie will be staged on an indoor hardcourt at Cez Arena.
The mighty Czechs are captained by Jaroslav Navratil, while Jan Siemerink will
guide the Dutchmen.
The Czech Republic beat the Netherlands 4-1 in a World Group playoff in 2006
in their lone previous meeting. The former Czechoslovakia went 3-1 versus the
Dutch from 1925-1978.
The Czech-Dutch winner will face the Canada-Japan victor in the quarterfinals
The Sports Network