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Djokovic to face Pospisil in Davis Cup semifinals

September 12, 2013

BELGRADE, Serbia (AP) — Top-ranked Novak Djokovic will open the Davis Cup semifinals against Vasek Pospisil on Friday when Serbia takes on Canada.

In the other singles match drawn Thursday, Janko Tipsarevic will face Milos Raonic, Canada’s top player. The doubles will be played Saturday and reverse singles are on Sunday.

Djokovic said he hopes to recover from the change of the time zones and jet leg after losing the U.S. Open final to Rafael Nadal on Monday.

“I arrived yesterday, but it’s not the first time that I have one or two days to get ready,” said Djokovic, who lost in four sets in New York. “I know my body, and I hope I can prepare for the opening match.”

Making things even more difficult for the 26-year-old Serb is the choice of an indoor clay court — originally picked by the hosts to dampen Raonic’s booming serve — that he will have to adjust to in the middle of the hard-court season.

“It’s obvious that I’m tired, time zones, jet leg, plus adjustment to the clay, but I feel fine and have a lot of motivation playing for my country,” Djokovic said.

The 23-year-old Pospisil, ranked 41st in the world, has never played Djokovic before.

“I have seen him play on TV lots of times, but it’s going to be completely different on the court,” Pospisil said. “I hope to learn as the match progresses.”

Canada has never made it this far in the Davis Cup, while Serbia won the event in 2010.

Raonic said Serbia is the favorite, “but that doesn’t mean we don’t have our chances.”

The towering Canadian, who has climbed in the rankings and is currently 11th, said he made progress in his clay-court play.

“I’m now playing better on clay, and I feel very confident now on the surface,” Raonic said.

Tipsarevic, once a top-10 player who has recently dropped in the rankings to 23rd after a string of injuries, said he hopes to do better against Raonic after losing their three encounters so far.

“Raonic’s serve will be a crucial factor,” Tipsarevic said. “If I can muster that segment, I think I have a chance.”

The winner will face either the Czech Republic of Argentina in the final in November.

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