Uruguay wary of Mexico's doubles prowess ahead of Americas Zone Davis Cup tie
The captain of Uruguay's Davis Cup team, Enrique Perez Cassarino, speaks at a press conference in Montevideo on Sept. 12, 2018, two days before the start of his team's Americas Zone Group II tie against Mexico at the Carrasco Lawn Tennis Club in the Uruguayan capital. EPA-EFE/Alejandro Prieto
Uruguay's top singles player, Pablo Cuevas, speaks at a press conference in Montevideo on Sept. 12, 2018, two days before the start of his team's Americas Zone Group II tie against Mexico at the Carrasco Lawn Tennis Club in the Uruguayan capital. EPA-EFE/Alejandro Prieto
The captain of Mexico's Davis Cup team, Leonardo Lavalle, speaks at a press conference in Montevideo on Sept. 12, 2018, two days before the start of his team's Americas Zone Group II tie against Uruguay at the Carrasco Lawn Tennis Club in the Uruguayan capital. EPA-EFE/Alejandro Prieto
Montevideo, Sep 12 (efe-epa).- The captain of Uruguay's Davis Cup team said here Wednesday ahead of his team's Americas Zone Group II tie this weekend against Mexico that the visitors were especially formidable in doubles.
"You have to win three points and (the) doubles (match) is one of them. I'm also aware that the Mexican team's biggest strength in terms of experience and results is doubles," Enrique Perez Cassarino said in a press conference ahead of the tie, which will be played on outdoor clay at the Carrasco Lawn Tennis Club in Montevideo.
"You have to play all of them, and there's no winner until one of the teams has won three matches."
He said he was very familiar with the Mexicans, particularly captain Leonardo Lavalle and their doubles players (Santiago Gonzalez and Miguel Angel Reyes-Varela), adding that he had followed the development of that team's younger players in Futures and Challenger Tour events.
Perez Cassarino also hailed the "great atmosphere" surrounding his squad, saying it was the product of many years of work with a core group of players and noting that young talents had been incorporated into the mix.
"I think that for the youngest (guys) having the chance to be around Pablo (Cuevas) and Bebu (Martin Cuevas) in training and in their day-to-day has been a unique experience, and we've really had a great time," the 50-year-old captain said.
He also expressed support for a controversial overhaul of the 118-year-old Davis Cup, which starting in 2019 will no longer be played throughout the year and will see all matches reduced from best-of-five to best-of-three sets.
The 2019 Davis Cup Finals will feature 18 teams and be played in Madrid. The final has traditionally been contested between just two teams, one of which hosted the tie, but a drastic revamp was approved because of the irregular participation of tennis' biggest stars.
"For players on a very tight schedule, not having to play five sets ... is an advantage," Perez Cassarino added, noting that many have suffered injuries due to excessive play on Davis Cup weekends.
Neither Uruguay nor Mexico will have a shot at making the 2019 Davis Cup Finals, although the winner of this weekend's tie will advance to the Americas Zone Group I and be in a position to potentially take part in the 24-team qualifying event for the 2020 Davis Cup Finals.