Davis Cup tie against New Zealand will not be a cakewalk, says Anand Amritraj

first_imgWhen India clash with New Zealand in Christchurch in the Davis Cup Asia-Oceania Group 1 tie from July 17-19, they will aim for a World Group playoff berth. Though India will be favourites on paper, non-playing captain Anand Amritraj reckons it will not be a cakewalk.New Zealand will have the home advantage and Indian players will have to quickly acclimatise to the cold conditions. Statistics favour India who lead New Zealand 4-3 in Davis Cup and had thrashed the Kiwis 5-0 in Chandigarh in 2012, the last time the two teams had met.But New Zealand players have gained significant experience since then. They have got a good doubles combination and three of their players Artem Sitak (40), Michael Venus (55) and Marcus Daniell (74) are in top 100 in doubles. New Zealand have also beaten China 4-1 at home and would look to seal a place in the World Group play-off for the first time since 1999.”It is definitely not going to be an easy task. They are playing in home conditions and they have a good doubles team. But our boys have been playing on the circuit and have got good results. They are fit and raring to go,” Amritraj told Mail Today as the team departed for New Zealand on Saturday.”The onus will be on singles players to get us the points on the first day. It will give us a good shot at qualifying for the World Group playoff again,” insisted Amritraj, who played a key role in taking the team to play-offs where they lost 2-3 to Serbia at home last year.advertisementIndia would be looking up to its top singles player Yuki Bhambri, who has risen to 156 on the back of some solid performances after his return from injury. “I have always enjoyed playing the Davis Cup and I am looking forward to get started. I am feeling good about my form. Yes, it will not be as easy as we had in 2012 against New Zealand at home. They are a far more experienced side since then. They have beaten China and are high on confidence. Besides they have a good doubles combination. So the onus will be on us to win our singles matches first up,” Yuki told Mail Today.last_img