ricoh arena named venue for uk davis cup tie


 LTA Announces Ricoh Arena as site for 2013 Davis Cup tie between Team GB and Russia

The Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) has today announced that the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas tie between the Aegon GB Davis Cup team and Russia will take place at the Ricoh Arena in the city of Coventry in the United Kingdom. The top player for Great Britain, reigning U.S. Open champion and 2013 Australian Open finalist Andy Murray, will not be participating in the tie.

The Europe/Africa Zone Group I second round tie will take place April 5-7, 2013, with the winners to compete in the 16-nation World Group Play-offs from September 13-15.  Great Britain secured promotion to Group I during their 2011 campaign and have received an opening round bye in this year’s competition.

Leon Smith, Captain of the Aegon GB Davis Cup Team, said: “We are very excited to be taking Davis Cup to Coventry and taking advantage of strong home support.  It will be tough against Russia, who are arguably the strongest team in our group, but we’ll be giving it our best shot.”

Gavin Fletcher, LTA Tournament Director added: “Both the city of Coventry and the team at the Ricoh Arena have made us very welcome.  It’ll be great bringing the Davis Cup back to the Midlands, where we’ve  enjoyed tremendous support in the past. I know the team is looking forward to playing in front of a very vocal crowd against Russia.”

Jacky Isaac, interim chief executive at the Ricoh Arena, said: “We are thrilled to be bringing world-class tennis to the Midlands by hosting the Davis Cup. We are confident there will be a great crowd at our top-class venue to cheer on Great Britain in their tie against Russia and this is another fantastic opportunity to raise the profile of Coventry on a national and international stage.”

Councillor Phil Townshend, Cabinet Member for Sport, commented: “We have a national reputation for delivering successful events and this will be another high profile one which will attract local residents and people from a wider area who love Tennis.  To host sporting events such as this also sits well alongside our stated aim of building on the legacy from being a co-host city for London 2012 as well as encouraging people to take part in sport and physical activity.”

Although the full Aegon GB Davis Cup team selections haven’t been announced yet, British No. 1 Andy Murray will not be competing in the upcoming tie against Russia. Murray said: “It’s a shame to miss out on the Davis Cup, as I always enjoy playing. I speak to Leon and the team on a regular basis and will definitely be available to play the next Davis Cup tie later this year.”

Aegon Team GB Captain Smith added: “We totally understand Andy’s position. He has worked extremely hard on his game elevating it to another level and we have all seen the fruits of that since Wimbledon. Andy’s success continues to inspire more and more young people to take up the sport and we look forward to welcoming him back into the team in September.”

Tickets for the tie go on general sale on Monday, February 4th via https://www.theticketfactory.com/default/online or on 0844 338 8838.  For group bookings please call 0800 358 0058 and for accessible bookings, call 0844 581 0700. Full price tickets start at £17.

fashion focus: australian open highlight(er)s



The fashions on the courts of Australian Open are a little more subtle this year, but a few things have stood out, most notably the presence of bright yellows and greens — the highlighter shades — for match play.

Alexandr Dolgopolov - Gael Monfils - Andy Murray - 2013 Australian Open

Gael Monfils (center), now a member of the Asics stable (he was previously with K-Swiss), played in a sleeveless crew — the Frenchman’s trademark — as he upset 18th seed Alexandr Dolgopolov 6-7(7), 7-6(4), 6-3, 6-3 in the first round. Andy Murray, on the right, is wearing this season’s Barricade crew, with the same shoulder detail that carried through from the end of last season.

Maria Sharapova - Nike - 2013 Australian Open

Grey was also the accent color of choice, with the straps on Maria Sharapova‘s Premier Tennis Dress from Nike in that shade (but we’re in love with the futuristic lines at the check and in the racerback), as well as the trims on the men’s adidas adiZero (on Dolgo) and Barricade (Murray) lines for the Australian summer.

More: Lisicki, Caro, Tomic, and the boys of Lotto all wear the brights — see ‘em  after the cut…

before london, andy tried a new game



Small court, big results. Before Andy Murray‘s London hopes got muddled because of injury, the Scot took to a British warehouse to play some Road Tennis. Not sure what that is? Nor were we. adidas explains:

[We invited the] Road Tennis Association of Barbados to London, to teach Murray how to play Road Tennis. A cross between traditional tennis and table tennis, Road Tennis is played on the street, with participants chalking out their own courts. Murray had never played the game before, and was given just one hour to pick up his wooden bat and attempt to master the game’s ins and outs, before we put him up against Barbados’ finest.

In the video above, Murray gets a “warm-up” with storied English boxer David Haye, who is now retired, and British rapper Example.

adidas noted that the Murray vid was the first of many to come for the brand over the next year: “The event marked the start of our new campaign, where we’ll be challenging some of the world’s best tennis players, around the biggest tournaments next year.” Excited? You bet we are!

As for who Murray gets a lesson from on the Road Tennis pavement? That’d be Sylvain “Lama” Barnett, a legend in Barbados and one of the Pro Road Tennis Association’s greatest players of all time.

(wednesday's) sunday survey: striking situation



Would these boys really do it? Strike. It’s not something tennis fans really want to think about, and even though Tennis Channel’s James LaRosa does point out some ways that a lack of tennis-playing might make fans’ lives better, we here at TSF would miss the weekly fashions (and trophies!) with great sadness. Andy Murray recently told the BBC that if the tennis bodies don’t step up then the players will, and Rafael Nadal echoed that players could take “strong action.” It doesn’t help that 2011′s king, Novak Djokovic, fell to the ground unable to continue during Davis Cup 10 days ago. Not the best image for the (functional) end of the tennis season, right?

Do you think a players’ strike could really happen? Weigh in below.

(photo by Getty Images)

adidas' barricades give murray some shape



The adidas Barricade collection for the 2011 U.S. Open — worn by Andy Murray in competition — has been doing a good job giving the lanky Scot some shape. (Well, more shape, since we know he doesn’t need the help). This bright red v-neck has details along the upper chest that accentuate his shoulders and collarbone; the black print down the sides breaks up the red, giving his torso a more toned look. These same concepts got lost in the noise a few seasons ago when every company used the trims; it’s refreshing to see it standing alone, succeeding at the optical illusion. (Buy: adidas Barricade Tee, $55, tennisexpress.com)

Other deets: And obviously, there’s that neon that we’re seeing everywhere…

Draw: The fourth-seeded Murray defeated Somdev Devvarman 7-6 (5), 6-2, 6-3 and will next play Robin Haase. They’re both in that bottom half of the men’s draw along with Rafael Nadal.

More: A few more photos of Andy in his Barricade Tee after the cut…