• McEnroe: U.S. favored without Federer

    2/26/09 6:44 AM | Ricky Dimon
    McEnroe: U.S. favored without Federer United States' Davis Cup captain Patrick McEnroe expressed disappointment over Roger Federer's absence from next month's Davis Cup tie against Switzerland. But he admits it makes the U.S. a significant favorite.

    Captain Patrick McEnroe announced his United States squad for next month's Davis Cup tie against Switzerland earlier this week, but the bigger story, of course, remains that Roger Federer will not be present in Birmingham, Alabama the weekend of March 6-8.

    "To be honest, I was a little disappointed really," McEnroe said when asked about his initial reaction to Federer's withdrawal. "I think we were all looking forward to the challenge of playing against Roger. I think both Andy (Roddick) and James (Blake) were certainly looking forward to the chance to play Roger. I know the Bryans (Bob and Mike) were looking forward to playing them in doubles as well.

    "You want a chance to play against the best, and our guys have always answered the call and really love playing at home. I think that would have been an advantage for them against Federer."

    McEnroe, however, is a lot more confident going up against a Swiss team that lacks the No. 2 player in the world. "It makes us a more solid favorite. For us, the goal is to try to get back into the later rounds and win the Cup again. We certainly have the capability of doing that. That's the bigger-term goal. We certainly like the fact that we feel we've got a better chance to advance.

    "So it's a little bit of both: it's a little disappointment, and at the same time, you know, obviously I'll probably sleep a little bit better next week as we prepare for the match without having to prepare for Roger."

    Roddick, Blake, and the Bryan Brothers will take on a Swiss team featuring Stanislas Wawrinka, Marco Chiudinelli, Stephane Bohli, and Yves Allegro. Chiudinelli upset Ivo Karlovic in Dubai this week before falling to Fabrice Santoro in three sets. Allegro is "more of a doubles player for them," according to McEnroe.

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I bet McEnroe is not that sorry, none of the Americans stand a chance without Federer.

carrie , 5/15/09 3:29 PM

Current ATP-rankings

1. Djokovic 12 500 pts
2. Murray 8 750 pts
3. Federer 8 670 pts
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