|August 2, 1999||
Brisbane to host Australia-Russia Davis Cup semi-final
Australia have chosen to play their Davis Cup semi-final against Russia on grass in Brisbane.
Tennis Australia said today that Brisbane had beaten Sydney and Perth for the right to stage the September 24-26 tie.
The tie will be held in the home stadium of the Brisbane Broncos Rugby League Club. The stadium features a grass court at one end of the ground and, with the addition of temporary stands on three sides, will have a seating capacity of 10,600.
''We're hoping that Brisbane will enable us to redeem our grasscourt reputation,'' said Davis Cup captain John Newcombe, referring to his team's shock loss to Zimbabwe in the first round of last year's competition on grass in the Victorian country town of Mildura.
The Australian team will be led by dual US Open champion Pat Rafter, who will be playing in his home state of Queensland.
Australia, led by Rafter, beat the United States in Boston last month in a quarter-final while Russia beat the Slovak Republic.
The winners will play either France or Belgium in the final in December. Australia won the last of their 26 Davis Cups in Melbourne in 1986.
But Newcombe faces injury worries over Mark Philippoussis, who injured his knee at Wimbledon, and Lleyton Hewitt, who sprained his left ankle in a match against Andre Agassi in Los Angeles last Friday.
Newcombe said teenager Hewitt could be out of action for up to five weeks, with the injury ''a little worse'' than first thought.
Russia is likely to field Australian Open champion Yevgeny Kafelnikov and 19-year-old Marat Safin.
Mail Sports Editor
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