Lloyd fears Davis Cup disaster without Rusedski

Britain's Davis Cup captain David Lloyd admits it would be a "disaster" if Greg Rusedski was ruled out of the World Group first-round tie against the Czech Republic next February.

Britain's Davis Cup captain David Lloyd admits it would be a "disaster" if Greg Rusedski was ruled out of the World Group first-round tie against the Czech Republic next February.

Rusedski has confirmed he will miss the first grand slam event of next year - the Australian Open starting in Melbourne on January 17 - after undergoing an operation on his right foot this week in Germany.

The British number two returned to London today but would only reveal: "The operation was straightforward and a complete success, and I hope to be playing again in early February."

Lloyd maintains Britain need their two top players, Tim Henman and Rusedski, to be at full strength in the Davis Cup.

And it remains to be seen if 26-year-old Rusedski, who married his girlfriend Lucy Connor three weeks ago, will be fit for the start of the competition at the Zimni Stadion in Ostrava on February 4.

"I saw him at his wedding and on his honeymoon and there was no mention of this so it has come as a shock," said Lloyd.

"Missing a major tournament like the Australian (Open) is a blow in itself, but if he is not going to make the Davis Cup side then from a British point of view it would be a disaster."

Lloyd told BBC Radio 5 Live: "Tim and Greg are so far in front of the other players that without him it would be virtually impossible. It's difficult as it is."

Defeat would also scupper Britain's chances of setting up a mouthwatering second-round revenge mission against the United States.

The Americans, who are expected to prove too strong for Zimbabwe in Harare in the first round, won a thrilling tie in Birmingham last April with Rusedski beaten by Todd Martin and Jim Courier in his singles rubbers.

Today's announcement caps an injury-ravaged last two years for the world number 14, who will also miss the pre-grand slam tournament in Sydney next month.

In May last year he was forced to miss Wimbledon with an ankle injury which saw him ruled out of action for two months shortly after peaking at number four in the world rankings.

Then a back injury plagued him going into 1999 and he was disappointingly beaten in the second round of the Australian Open by unheralded American qualifier Paul Goldstein.

But the year improved for the Canadian-born left-hander when he became the first Briton in 22 years to reach the fourth round of the French Open, although he needed medical treatment to bad blisters on his feet after failing to reach the quarter-finals when his inconsistent form saw him beaten by Uruguayan qualifier Marcelo Filippini, then ranked a lowly 140 in the world.

At Wimbledon this year he lost in the fourth round to fellow big server Mark Philippoussis, but injury returned to haunt him during the autumn when he was forced to pull out of successive tournaments in Los Angeles, Cincinnati and Indianapolis because of tendinitis in his right big toe and foot.

In September he suffered arguably his most painful defeat of the year when, after being two sets up and serving for the match, he lost to Todd Martin in the fourth round of the US Open.

Rusedski bounced back to help Britain beat South Africa in the Davis Cup, and in October claimed more than £800,000 for winning the Grand Slam Cup in Munich.

Two weeks later he followed that up with victory in the ATP CA Tournament in Vienna.

But his hopes of ending the century on a high were shattered when a thigh muscle injury saw him pull out of the Paris Open in November, so ending his chances of booking a place in the season-ending ATP World Championships.

News
people
News
A survey carried out by Sainsbury's Finance found 20% of new university students have never washed their own clothes, while 14% cannot even boil an egg
science...and the results are not as pointless as that sounds
News
Dominique Alderweireld, also known as Dodo de Saumure, is the owner of a string of brothels in Belgium
newsPhilip Sweeney gets the inside track on France's trial of the year
News
Cumberbatch was speaking on US television when he made the comment (Getty)
people
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Tom DeLonge, Travis Barker and Mark Hoppus of Blink-182 pictured in 2011.
musicBassist Mark Hoppus and drummer Travis Barker say Tom Delonge is 'disrespectful and ungrateful'
Sport
football
Arts and Entertainment
Olivia Colman and David Tennant star in 'Broadchurch'
tvBroadchurch series 2, episode 4, review - contains spoilers
Sport
cyclingDisgraced cycling star says people will soon forgive his actions
News
Britain's Prince Philip attends a Garden Party at Buckingham Palace in London
people
Arts and Entertainment
Ed Sheeran will play three sell-out gigs at Wembley Stadium in July
music
News
i100
News
Lena Dunham posing for an official portrait at Sundance 2015
people
Arts and Entertainment
Under the skin: Sarah Kane in May 1998
theatreThe story behind a new season of Sarah Kane plays
Arts and Entertainment
Preening: Johnny Depp in 'Mortdecai'
filmMortdecai becomes actor's fifth consecutive box office bomb
Sport
Bradford City's reward for their memorable win over Chelsea is a trip to face either Sunderland or Fulham (Getty)
football
News
Lars Andersen took up archery in his mid thirties
video
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Woman who was sent to three Nazi death camps describes how she escaped the gas chamber

Auschwitz liberation 70th anniversary

Woman sent to three Nazi death camps describes surviving gas chamber
DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

The inside track on France's trial of the year

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
As provocative now as they ever were

Sarah Kane season

Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea