Woodforde cuts short Davis Cup career

Australian doubles star Mark Woodforde has almost certainly played his final Davis Cup match.

Australian doubles star Mark Woodforde has almost certainly played his final Davis Cup match.

Woodforde had vowed to quit Davis Cup play if Australia lifted the trophy for the first time in 13 years - which they duly did by completing their victory over France in the final yesterday.

The 34-year-old left-hander teamed up with his longtime partner Todd Woodbridge to defeat Fabrice Santoro and Olivier Delaitre in four sets on Saturday to give Australia a 2-1 lead and then watched as Mark Philippoussis beat Cedric Pioline 6-3 5-7 6-1 6-2 to seal the first Aussie triumph since 1986.

Although Sebastien Grosjean salvaged some Gallic pride by beating Hewitt 6-4 6-3 in the dead rubber the 3-2 score ensured Australia lifted the trophy for the 27th time, a record bettered only by the United States.

While Woodforde has played his last Davis Cup match, barring emergencies, he plans to partner Woodbridge in a bid to win a second Olympic gold medal in Sydney next year.

The pair also plan to play selected ATP Tour events next season, but Woodforde has decided that 12 years of playing in the Davis Cup is enough after finally earning a winners' medal.

"I'm not a glutton," Woodforde said. "It's been great playing the whole time at the Davis Cup, but I think sometimes enough is enough.

"It would be great to go out knowing that we have won as a team, give a chance to somebody else.

"Todd and I have been the backbone for so long and I would just like to see somebody else play - because that is the future. I'll be happy to hand over my spot."

Woodforde won 10 Grand Slam doubles titles in his career, including nine with Woodbridge and one with John McEnroe.

Woodforde and Woodbridge have an amazing 14-2 Davis Cup record as a pair - and are unbeaten since 1994 in Cup play.

The red-headed Woodforde made his Davis Cup debut in singles in 1988 but has a 4-10 record when playing on his own. He has been far more successful in doubles.

He has won just four singles title on the ATP Tour - including two in his hometown of Adelaide - but 59 doubles titles in a career that has seen him earn almost 8 million US dollars in prizemoney.

Woodbridge said the win over Santoro and Delaitre was especially exciting because it put the Australians on the brink of their first Davis Cup title since 1986 - after a year in which the pair has played well below their usual form.

The French pair led by a set and 5-3 and held a set point for the second set before the Australians swept back to take 16 of the last 20 games and win 2-6 7-5 6-2 6-2.

"I think for both of us it was probably one of our most rewarding victories," Woodbridge said.

"I'd never seen Mark so emotional as when we won."

Woodforde said he found the moment among the most thrilling of his career.

"How exciting is it to come back after playing crappy tennis for most of the year?" he asked. "Once we had that opportunity we grabbed it."

Arts and Entertainment
Books should be for everyone, says Els, 8. Publisher Scholastic now agrees
booksAn eight-year-old saw a pirate book was ‘for boys’ and took on the publishers
Life and Style
Mary Beard received abuse after speaking positively on 'Question Time' about immigrant workers: 'When people say ridiculous, untrue and hurtful things, then I think you should call them out'
tech
Life and Style
Most mail-order brides are thought to come from Thailand, the Philippines and Romania
life
News
i100
Life and Style
tech
Voices
Margaret Thatcher, with her director of publicity Sir Gordon Reece, who helped her and the Tory Party to victory in 1979
voicesThe subject is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for former PR man DJ Taylor
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
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.

General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions