Spain's Ferrer to face Czech Stepanek in Davis Cup opener
By Jason Hovet
PRAGUE (Reuters) - World number five David Ferrer will start Spain's bid for a fourth Davis Cup title in five years on Friday against the Czech Republic's Radek Stepanek.
The Czech team's top player, sixth-ranked Tomas Berdych, will then take on Nicolas Almagro in the second of the opening day's matches.
Defending champions Spain are without injured former world number one Rafa Nadal but team captain Alex Corretja was happy with the outcome of Thursday's draw.
"If I could choose, I would have David (play) first," Corretja told a news conference. "He has played in more finals... so I prefer David to start because of his experience."
The Czechs are aiming to achieve a rare double after the women's team won the Fed Cup in Prague two weeks ago.
A Davis Cup victory would make the Czech Republic the first country in 22 years to claim both trophies in the same season.
Marcel Granollers and Marc Lopez will lead Spain in Saturday's doubles match. The pair are just coming off a doubles victory at the ATP Tour Finals.
Czech captain Jaroslav Navratil has slated Lukas Rosol and Ivo Minar for the doubles but will likely turn to Berdych and Stepanek instead. Continued...