Davis Cup: Andy Murray left out of Great Britain team for crunch Davis Cup clash
Kyle Edmund and Dan Evans will play the singles rubbers against Kazakhstan
Last Updated: 21/11/19 9:50am
Andy Murray has been left out of the team for Great Britain's crunch Davis Cup clash with Kazakhstan in Madrid.
The former world No 1 needed close to three hours to battle past Tallon Griekspoor in Britain's victory over the Netherlands on Wednesday and after admitted that he's not in the best shape.
Kyle Edmund comes into the team as the No 2 singles player, with Dan Evans shifting up to No 1. Jamie Murray and Neal Skupski will again take to court for the doubles rubber, which could prove to be decisive yet again.
Victory at the Caja Magica would send Britain through to the quarter-finals but defeat risks an early exit.
Murray's 6-7 (7-9) 6-4 7-6 (7-5) win on Wednesday against 179th-ranked Griekspoor was the sort of comeback for which he has become famous for. He was 4-1 down in the deciding set and then in the same position in the tie-break before conjuring some remarkable defence to claw his way to victory.
Griekspoor played well above his ranking but Murray was sluggish throughout, the sharp movement that was evident in his brilliant title victory in Antwerp a month ago sorely lacking.
The Scot admitted last week that he had put on a few pounds in the weeks since as the arrival of his son Teddy.
"I told you guys I wasn't feeling in the best shape coming in, and it showed a little bit in the match," he said.
"The weight and things like that, that's my fault. I won't put myself in that position again.
"If you're weighing four or five kilos more than you're used to, that is probably going to affect how you feel moving around the court.
Murray back from the brink at Davis Cup
Andy Murray battled back from the brink of defeat as Great Britain edged past the Netherlands 2-1 at the Davis Cup in Madrid.
Murray was not helped by the Netherlands springing a surprise by selecting Griekspoor instead of Botic van de Zandschulp, who Britain had been preparing for.
The Scot denied that the British team had taken this match lightly but conceded the result could easily have gone the other way.
"He played brilliant," said Murray. "I was lucky at the end of the match. He deserved to win.
"It is about finding a way to win, and I did that today. And I'm proud of myself because it would have been easy to have lost that."
British No 1 Evans looked to be in a winning position at a set and a break-up and he served for the match at 5-4 in the second set only for Haase, a former top-40 player currently ranked 163, to mount a fightback.
That put the pressure on Jamie Murray and Skupski, who have formed an encouraging partnership since linking up in June.
Skupski's older brother Ken played in Smith's first Davis Cup tie in 2010 and he tweeted his pride as Neal produced a fine performance, coming up with big shots at the important moments.
Davis Cup Finals - Group Matches (Fixtures & Results)
|Group A||France 2-1 Japan||Group D||Belgium 2-1 Colombia|
|Serbia 3-0 Japan||Australia 3-0 Colombia|
|France vs Serbia||Belgium 1-2 Australia|
|Group B||Croatia 0-3 Russia||Group E||Kazakhstan 2-1 Netherlands|
|Spain 2-1 Russia||GB 2-1 Netherlands|
|Croatia 0-3 Spain||GB vs Kazakhstan|
|Group C||Argentina 3-0 Chile||Group F||Italy 1-2 Canada|
|Argentina 0-3 Germany||USA 1-2 Canada|
|Germany vs Chile||USA 2-1 Italy|
Jamie Murray said: "We did really well to win today. It was a really tough match against a really good doubles team. We knew it was going to be a battle.
"Obviously Evo (Dan Evans) played a really good match, got himself into a position to win. We were like: 'OK, it's going to be 2-0', our match doesn't maybe have the same pressure, and then an hour later we were playing and it all comes down to that match.
"You feel: 'OK, on the first day we could maybe be out of the competition'. So I think we did a great job to stay focused and play to a level that we did. And of course, for Neal to do that in his debut I think was really impressive."
On paper, Kazakhstan will be a sterner test with two top-100 players in Mikhail Kukushkin and Alexander Bublik.