Britain set to face Israel test

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The Independent Online

Great Britain will visit Israel in the second round of the Davis Cup Euro-African Zone from 29 April to 1 May next year.

Great Britain will visit Israel in the second round of the Davis Cup Euro-African Zone from 29 April to 1 May next year.

Defeated in Austria in the World Group play-offs last weekend, Great Britain were seeded on their return to the second division of the premier men's international team competition and received a first-round bye.

If they overcome Israel, whose top players, Noam Okun and Harel Levy, are ranked 148th and 169th in the world respectively, Great Britain will qualify for another opportunity to challenge for a place in the 16-strong World Group.

The British team's captain, Jeremy Bates, played in the last match against Israel, a 4-1 win at Eastbourne in 1985.

During the next six months, Alex Bogdanovic and Andrew Murray, two youngsters who were included in Bates' squad in Austria, will have a chance to show they are ready to ease the burden on Tim Henman and Greg Rusedski.

Murray, the US Open junior champion, will take centre stage against John McEnroe next Sunday, when sprint tennis comes to London.

The 17-year-old Scot is to substitute for the injured Henman in the £250,000, winner-takes-all Superset Tennis event at Wembley Arena. Henman has also withdrawn from next week's ATP Tour event in Lyon because of a swollen shoulder and a sore back.

McEnroe, a stalwart of the senior tour, reckons he is still a match for anybody over one set, and the Superset formula gives him a chance to prove it.

Superset is a sudden-death one-set competition. The draw is: Greg Rusedski v Boris Becker, Goran Ivanisevic v Tommy Robredo, Robby Ginepri v Mario Ancic, McEnroe v Murray. The winners will contest the semi-finals and final on Sunday evening.

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