Slovakia announces venue and surface for Davis Cup tie against Canada

Canada's Milos Raonic. (Chris Young/CP)

MONTREAL — Slovakia will try to slow down the hard-hitting Canadian power game when the two teams meet in a Davis Cup qualifying round tie next year.

The Slovak Tennis Federation said Tuesday that the Feb. 1-2 tie will be played on an indoor red clay court at the 4,000-seat NTC Arena in Bratislava. Player nominations will be announced at a later date, Tennis Canada said in a release.

Milos Raonic of Thornhill, Ont., and Denis Shapovalov of Richmond Hill, Ont., anchored the Canadian side to a 3-1 World Group playoff win over the Netherlands last September on a fast indoor hardcourt in Toronto.

Vancouver’s Vasek Pospisil, Toronto’s Daniel Nestor and Montreal’s Felix Auger-Aliassime were also on the team.

Canada holds the No. 17 position in the Davis Cup rankings while Slovakia is 29th. Qualifier ties will consist of four singles rubbers and one doubles rubber.

Under the new 2019 Davis Cup format, qualifying round winners will advance to the Nov. 18-24 Davis Cup Finals in Madrid. They will join the four 2018 semifinalists (France, Croatia, Spain, United States) and two wild-card entries (Argentina, Britain) in an 18-team finale.

The Slovaks beat Canada 4-1 in their only other Davis Cup matchup in 1997 at Montreal.

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