Greek team set for Fed Cup

Greek team set for Fed Cup

After two consecutive promotions, Greece returns to Group I of the Fed Cup for the first time since 2012.

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The Greek team, currently on an eight-match win streak dating back to 2016, will be looking to gain promotion to the World Group II from the Europe/Africa Zone Group I for the first time ever. Greece has previously competed in the World Group, but not since the format was changed back in 1992.

For the first time, the group has been split into two separate events. Event A is being held in Poland, where Poland, Russia, Ukraine, Estonia, Bulgaria, Denmark, and Sweden will participate. Greece will be competing in Event B in Bath, Great Britain on indoor hard courts. Also competing there will be hosts Great Britain, Serbia, Croatia, Hungary, Turkey, Georgia, and Slovenia. Each event will see one team gain promotion and one see relegation.

Greece was drawn into Pool A alongside Great Britain, Hungary, and Slovenia. The winner of the pool will advance to the promotional play-off, while the last-placed team will fight to stay alive in the relegation play-off. All matches will consist of two singles matches and a doubles match. The standard best two out of three set scoring system will be used.

This year’s Greek team will consist of Maria Sakkari, Valentini Grammatikopoulou, Despina Papamichail, Anna Arkadianou, and coach Tasos Bavelas. Sakkari is the highest ranked player on the team, currently at 38 in the world. She will be playing on the Greek team for the seventh year, where she holds a 10-16 overall record (9-10 in singles and 1-6 in doubles). Grammatikopoulou is Greece’s second-best player, ranked 171 in the world. The 21-year-old will be playing on the team for the fifth year, and she holds an impressive 11-3 overall record (8-1 in singles and 3-2 in doubles) when playing for her country. Sakkari and Grammatikopoulou are expected to play the majority of Greece’s matches.

Papamichail is Greece’s third highest ranked player, currently at 462 in singles, though she was once ranked as high as 317. She is also ranked 252 in doubles, where she holds a career-high ranking of 162, and therefore may feature in some doubles matches. She is playing on the team for the seventh time in her career, but for the first time since 2016. She has an overall record of 15-15 (10-4 in singles and 5-11 in doubles) in Fed Cup play. Lastly, 17-year-old Arkadianou will be making her debut on the Greek team. She is currently Greece’s top-ranked junior player.

Greece’s first match will take place on Wednesday against Hungary. On Thursday, Greece will take on hosts Great Britain. Pool play will conclude on Friday with Greece facing Slovenia.

 

by Andrew Stamas

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