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Thursday, 9th February 2012
In Japan Sports News,

Japan face Croatia in the Davis Cup

Japan is to take on Croatia in the Davis Cup tennis tournament this weekend, with the Croatians expected to play the match with a weakened side.

With the match set to take place at the Bourbon Beans Dome in the western Japan city of Miki, Croatian star and Ivan Ljubicic and the number one Croatian player Marin Cilic have been named in the side, the AFP reported.

Former champion Mario Ancic, who led Croatia to David Cup glory back in 2005, retired last year.

After beating India in a play-off, the match against Croatia will be Japan's first in the World Group since 1995.

Japan's number two player Go Soeda will open the match against Ivan Dodig on Friday (February 10th), before the country's number one player Kei Nishikori - who recently made it to the quarter-finals of the Australian Open - plays Ivo Karlovic

Japan's captain Eiji Takeuchi said: "Go is playing the perfect game right now and Kei has had almost the same results as Karlovic, so it's going to be interesting, but they have big serves so we must focus on our returns."

Written by Mark Smith