The USTA and U.S. Davis Cup Captain Jim Courier has announced that world No. 13 John Isner, No. 22 Sam Querrey and 2012 Olympic doubles gold medalists Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan will represent the United States in the 2013 Davis Cup by BNP Paribas First Round tie against Brazil, Feb. 1-3. The tie will be played on an indoor hard court at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Fla.
Brazil, which is playing in the World Group for the first time since 2003, announced its roster of No. 33 Thomaz Bellucci, No. 145 Thiago Alves, and Marcelo Melo and Bruno Soares, who are ranked No. 17 and No. 19 in doubles, respectively.
Matches will be telecast live on Tennis Channel and begin at 2:00 p.m. ET on Friday and Saturday and 12:00 p.m. ET on Sunday. The best-of-five match series begins Friday with two singles matches, featuring each country’s No. 1 player against the other country’s No. 2 player. Saturday’s schedule features the pivotal doubles match. The final day of play on Sunday will feature two “reverse singles” matches, when the No. 1 players square off followed by the No. 2 players meeting each other in the final match. All matches are best-of-five sets until one nation clinches the tie, at which time they become best-of-three sets. A revised schedule for Sunday may take place if a team clinches in the third or fourth match.
The winner of this tie will face the winner of Serbia and Belgium in the quarterfinal round, April 5-7. Should the U.S. defeat Brazil, it would host the quarterfinal.
This will be the first home tie for the U.S. since the 2011 quarterfinal in Austin, Texas, and just the third home tie for the U.S. since 2009. (In that time, the U.S. team has played seven road matches--all on clay.) It is also the first-ever home tie for both Isner and Querrey.
Courier also announced that the practice partners for the tie will be 2010 US Open boys’ singles champion and 2011 US Open mixed doubles champion Jack Sock, who is ranked a career-high No. 149 in the world, and 2010 NCAA singles champion Bradley Klahn, who advanced to the second round at the 2012 US Open as a qualifying wild card. Both players have served as practice partners previously.
This will mark the fifth meeting between the U.S. and Brazil in Davis Cup. The U.S. leads the overall series, 3-1, with its last victory against Brazil coming in the 1997 first round in Ribeirao Preto, Brazil, when Courier and MaliVai Washington led the U.S. to a 4-1 win. The U.S. is 109-16 all-time in Davis Cup ties played at home and undefeated in Florida (6-0). This will be the seventh Davis Cup tie played in the state of Florida and the first since the U.S. defeated Sweden, 4-1, in the 2004 quarterfinal at the Delray Beach Tennis Center.
Isner, 27, will be competing in his seventh Davis Cup tie; he is 5-5 in singles and 2-0 in doubles. Isner defeated Roger Federer in the U.S. Davis Cup team’s first round win at Switzerland last year, one of the biggest wins of his career, and he won his fifth career ATP singles title in 2012 at the Winston-Salem Open, an Emirates Airline US Open Series event. The tallest player in U.S. Davis Cup history, at 6-foot-9, Isner made his Davis Cup debut in the 2010 World Group First Round in Serbia, where he became the first U.S. player to compete in three live rubbers in the same tie since James Blake in the 2003 first round. He turned professional after an outstanding four-year career at the University of Georgia, leading the Bulldogs to the 2007 NCAA team title as a senior. Isner is currently No. 13 in the world and represented the U.S. in the 2012 Olympics in London, reaching the quarterfinals before losing to Federer.
Querrey, 25, will be competing in his fifth Davis Cup tie; he holds a 1-5 Davis Cup singles record. Querrey made his Davis Cup debut against then-world No. 1 Rafael Nadal on clay in Madrid in the 2008 World Group Semifinal, losing in four sets. He peaked at No. 17 in the world in January 2011, but was forced to undergo right elbow surgery in June 2011 that sidelined him for three months. In 2012, Querrey climbed back up the rankings after winning his seventh career ATP title at the Emirates Airline US Open Series event in Los Angeles and reaching three ATP semifinals. Querrey reached the third round at the 2013 Australian Open.
Bob Bryan, 34, holds a 21-2 doubles record in Davis Cup and a 20-2 record with twin brother, Mike. He is also 4-2 in singles (all in dead rubbers). Bob did not compete in last year’s first round match at Switzerland due to the birth of his daughter. The 20 wins for Bob and Mike are first all-time in U.S. Davis Cup history for a tandem, and they are the only brothers to pair in victory for the U.S. Bob and Mike also hold the all-time Open era record of most Grand Slam men’s doubles titles (12) and ATP doubles titles (83). The Bryan brothers won the gold medal in doubles at the 2012 Olympics in London, where they completed a career Golden Slam by winning all four Grand Slam titles and an Olympic gold medal. Bob and Mike are currently in the quarterfinals of the Australian Open, where they are five-time champions.
Mike Bryan, 34, played without twin brother Bob for just the second time in his Davis Cup career during the 2012 World Group First Round, instead teaming with Mardy Fish to defeat 2008 Olympic doubles gold medalists Federer and Stanislas Wawrinka to clinch the tie for the U.S. Mike holds a 22-2 record in Davis Cup doubles matches and is 20-2 with Bob. (Mike also partnered with Fish in the 2008 semifinal against Spain.) He played in 19 consecutive doubles matches for the U.S. Davis Cup team since he and Bob joined the team in September 2003 until suffering from food poisoning before the 2010 World Group First Round in Serbia. (Isner replaced Mike and teamed with Bob.) The Bryan brothers ended 2012 as the No. 1-ranked doubles team in the world, finishing as the top-ranked doubles team in the world for a record eighth times in 10 years.
Founded in 1900, Davis Cup is the world’s largest annual international men’s team competition with 130 nations competing in 2013. The U.S. leads all nations with 32 Davis Cup titles. The United States holds a 212-66 all-time Davis Cup record and owns the longest uninterrupted run in the World Group, dating back to 1989. Wilson is the official ball of the U.S. Davis Cup Team.