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Ruud to lead Europe’s Laver Cup defence

The fourth Laver Cup, tennis’ version of golf’s Ryder Cup, the brainchild of Roger Federer and his management team, gets underway today, Friday, in Boston after being cancelled last year by the COVID pandemic.

So just looking forward for my first match and for the first match of Casper also, to see how it is (sitting) on the bench, what's the energy, Daniil Medvedev

The event returns with Team World looking for their first win after losses to Team Europe in the three previous editions (2017-2019).

On opening day on the hard courts, clay specialist Casper Ruud will meet the big serving 7-footer Reilly Opelka and then Wimbledon finalist Matteo Berrettini battles US Open semi-finalist Felix Auger-Aliassime.

In the evening, Andrey Rublev will challenge the World’s No.15, Diego Schwartzman followed by a doubles.

On paper Team Europe would seem to have the advantage with all of their team sitting comfortably in the ATP’s top ten but the sport-mad Boston crowd will, without doubt, be roaring the home team on as it features two of their own.

The partisan crowd will be playing a part, but their intimidation should not affect the likes of Daniil Medvedev who is excited at making his debut in the competition.

Alexander Zverev and Daniil Medvedev of Team Europe speaking at a pre-match press conference

Adam Glanzman/Getty Images for Laver Cup

The 25-year-old Muscovite acknowledges that participating in the event is completely different from watching it on TV has he has done in the past.

“I’m really excited to represent Team Europe. My first experience so I don’t know what to expect. I know the format, just want to bring the most points possible for my team in singles because I don’t think I’m playing doubles…

“I’m not really good (in doubles). I want to see how it is. It is not the same on TV as when you are playing. So just looking forward for my first match and for the first match of Casper also to see how it is (sitting) on the bench, what’s the energy,” Medvedev said.

All matches are ad-scoring with a 10-point match tiebreaker for the third set.

Points for each win increase by the day, with 1 point per win on Friday, 2 on Saturday and 3 for a Sunday win. The first team to reach 13 lifts the Laver Cup.

The event is played out over 12 matches with 3 singles and 1 doubles each day.

Afternoon session
Reilly Opelka (Team World) vs Casper Ruud (Team Europe)
Felix Auger-Aliassime (Team World) vs Matteo Berrettini (Team Europe)
Evening session
Diego Schwartzman (Team World) vs Andrey Rublev (Team Europe)
John Isner/Denis Shapovalov (Team World) vs Matteo Berrettini/Alexander Zverev (Team Europe)

The Line-Up with World Ranking
Diego Schwartzman (Arg) 15
Denis Shapovalov (Can) 12
Felix Auger-Aliassime (Can) 11
Reilly Opelka (USA) 19
John Isner (USA) 22
Nick Kyrgios (Aus) 95
Captain: John McEnroe

Daniil Medvedev (Rus) 2
Stefanos Tsitsipas (Gre) 3
Alexander Zverev (Ger) 4
Andrey Rublev (Rus) 5
Matteo Berrettini (Ita) 7
Casper Ruud (Nor) 10
Captain: Bjorn Borg



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