“At the Moment it’s Just a Tournament”: Alexander Zverev Calls For Davis Cup to Go Back to ‘Old System’

Published 04/28/2021, 7:51 AM EDT
Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 14, 2021 Germany’s Alexander Zverev celebrates winning his fourth round match against Serbia’s Dusan Lajovic REUTERS/Kelly Defina

German tennis star Alexander Zverev has called on organizers of the Davis Cup to return to the old format. The current World No.6 said he won’t reconsider his decision not to represent his country at the prestigious event till the old tournament format is brought back.


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As per the original event format, the 16 best national teams are to be put in a World Cup and will play each other annually for the title. Countries failing to secure passage to the World Cup will compete in three regional zones – Americas, Asia/Oceania and Europe/Africa. However, the year 2019 saw a flood of changes to the pre-existing tournament format.

New format for Davis Cup


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With the new-look Davis Cup, all the World Group clashes take place at one venue, all in one week. As opposed to 16 teams competing for the title earlier, a total of 18 teams are now divided into six round-robin groups of three teams each.

The winners of each group as well as the two best second-place finishers progress to the quarter-finals.

Another noticeable change was that, unlike the previous format, the World Group clashes will feature two singles and a doubles, in a departure from the best-of-5 series.

Each match will be decided in three sets and not five, as was the case earlier.

With the World Group now taking place as a single event, it was renamed the Davis Cup Finals.

Tennis – ATP 500 – Mexican Open – The Fairmont Acapulco Princess, Acapulco, Mexico – March 17, 2021, Germany’s Alexander Zverev celebrates after winning his second round match against Serbia’s Laslo Djere REUTERS/Carlos Perez-Gallardo

Also, teams in the lower zones, I and II, will play single ties that will decide relegation or promotion.

Alexander Zverev says playing Davis Cup now is the same as playing ATP Cup

Zverev said the revised format makes Davis Cup very similar to playing the ATP Cup, an annual team event on the men’s Tour.

Speaking to a German publication Bild Sport, the World No.6 said his “opinion has not changed” with regard to playing Davis Cup.


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“At the moment, it’s just a tournament. I played the ATP Cup, it’s the same for me. I hope they will return to the old system — with emotions and with passion,” the German said.


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(Quotes have been translated via Google)


Priyabrata Chowdhury

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Priyabrata Chowdhury is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. He has been a print journalist for a decade, producing news pages for leading national dailies such as the Hindustan Times and The New Indian Express. His passion for sports eventually drove him to tennis writing.