Andy and Jamie Murray and Bob and Mike Bryan are set to make history in Glasgow next week. No pairs of brothers have ever faced each other in the Davis Cup’s World Group, but the Murrays and the Bryans are on collision course in Britain’s meeting with the United States at the Emirates Arena.
Both teams named their line-ups yesterday. The Bryan twins are an automatic choice for the Americans, but Leon Smith, Britain’s captain, has a trickier doubles decision to make. He has named a squad that includes Jamie Murray and Dominic Inglot, who are both doubles specialists, but will be hoping that Andy Murray will play in the doubles as well as two singles. The likelihood is that the brothers will play together in the Davis Cup for the first time since 2011.
Brothers have faced brothers on five different occasions in Davis Cup history – including a tie in 1978 when Britain’s John and David Lloyd met Monaco’s Louis and Michel Borfiga – but never in the World Group. However, Britain’s Laurence and Reggie Doherty met the Americans George and Robert Wrenn in the 1903 final.
Andy Murray and James Ward will be Britain’s singles players, while the Americans sprang a surprise by naming Donald Young as their No 2 behind John Isner. Sam Querrey and Steve Johnson are both placed higher in the world rankings, but Young is in good form.
Playing their first home tie in the World Group for 13 years, Britain will be hoping to repeat their victory over the Americans at the same first-round stage in San Diego last year. The 7,100-capacity Emirates Arena quickly sold out for all three days.
Smith yesterday described it as a “50-50 tie” but added: “For us to win we’re still going to have to create an upset somewhere. If it all goes to plan and Andy wins his singles matches, then we’ll either have to beat the best doubles team in history or James will have to beat Isner or Young, which in ranking terms would be an upset.”
All the British team are in Dubai this week. Andy Murray and Ward both played their first-round singles matches yesterday. Murray beat Luxembourg’s Gilles Müller 6-4, 7-5. The new world No 3 was broken for the only time when he served for the match at 5-4, but broke back and then served out for victory.
Ward, who came through qualifying, was beaten 6-4, 6-4 by Feliciano Lopez but the match was tight throughout. Ward forced eight break points but was unable to convert any of them.