Anderson, Coetzee shun Davis Cup

TOP South African tennis player Kevin Anderson has again chosen to place his own interests ahead of those of the country's by making himself unavailable for the tricky Euro-Africa Group One Davis Cup tie against Finland at the Groenkloof Centre in Pretoria next month.

TOP South African tennis player Kevin Anderson has again chosen to place his own interests ahead of those of the country's by making himself unavailable for the tricky Euro-Africa Group One Davis Cup tie against Finland at the Groenkloof Centre in Pretoria next month.

And this time the body blow has been delivered after the 114th world-ranked Anderson, who shunned Davis Cup duty last year, had intimated to South African team captain John-Laffnie de Jager that he would make himself available for selection this year.

The big server, who was instrumental in South Africa beating Finland in Helsinki two years ago when he overcame the world's 67th-ranked Jarkko Nieminen, was an absentee when the South African Tennis Association yesterday announced a squad consisting of Rik de Voest, Wesley Moodie, Raven Klaasen and Izak van der Merwe to do duty at Groenkloof from May 7 to 9.

De Jager did not hide his disappointment over Anderson's non-availability. Another Davis Cup regular absent from the local line-up to secure a place in the World Group playoffs later in the year is doubles specialist Jeff Coetzee.

Coetzee's results, however, have deteriorated in the past 12 months, with his ranking plummeting from 12th in the world to 79th. De Jager's reluctance to guarantee him one of the two doubles spots against Finland has played a part in him bowing out of the tie.

In the circumstances, the world's ninth-ranked Moodie, who returned to tournament tennis last week in the Miami Masters after a two-month absence because of a foot injury, will probably partner De Voest in the doubles.

De Voest has also experienced a lean spell in both singles and doubles in the past year, resulting in his singles ranking dropping 140 places to 301.

But given the absence of Anderson, he is likely to retain his place as the line-up's No 1 singles player as well. - Sapa

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