BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA: Whilst the dust from Davis Cup is still settling, Paula Ormaechea, the Argentine No. 1 player, and Johanna Larsson will open the first round of the Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group II tie tomorrow between the South Americans and Sweden in Mary Teran de Weiss Stadium at Parque Roca.
After the opening rubber, Florencia Molinero and Sofia Arvidsson, the Swedish No. 1, will step onto the court to close the first day of action, with both teams aiming to capture a berth in the World Group playoffs.
It’s been 40 years since the first encounter between Argentina and Sweden in Fed Cup and more than 35 since the last occasion. They were different times for the competition, as none of the mentioned ties even took place in Argentina or Sweden.
The Scandinavian nation – who have won both previous ties 3-0 - appear as the clear favourite in terms of rankings with world No.38 Arvidsson and No.71 Larsson. The best player Argentina can count on is Ormaechea, who is currently No.197.
However, as Arvidsson smartly says, “in Fed Cup anything can happen. We expect a very tough match. The crowd will be an extra player for Argentina”.
The home team has been playing together – with slight changes from time-to-time - for the last three years, so that makes them strong in terms of spirit. They are all aware of the difficulties they are going to face through the weekend, but they feel confident.
“We are well prepared, it’s going to be a tough tie. Sweden have players with better rankings than ours, very experienced. Arvidsson has played so many ties... But anyway I think it’s going to be a close tie. Normally, if you look at the rankings, they are favourites, but we will play on clay courts, with the crowd on our side. We know we have a chance”, says Betting Fulco, the commander of the Argentine ship during the three-year period.
On the other side, Lars-Anders Wahlgren, Sweden’s captain, is making his first appearance in the competition. “This is my first tie ever for Sweden, so everything is very new for me. Of course, I know the players very well, I’ve worked with Sofia, Johanna has worked with the team as well. The girls are very well prepared, they’re playing very good tennis, so it’s going to be interesting”.
The full draw is listed below:
R1: Paula Ormeachea (ARG) v Johanna Larsson (SWE)
R2: Florencia Molinero (ARG) v Sofia Arvidsson (SWE)
R3: Paulo Ormeachea (ARG) v Sofia Arvidsson (SWE)
R4: Florencia Molinero (ARG) v Johanna Larsson (SWE)
R5:Maria Irigoyen/Mailen Auroux (ARG) v Sofia Arvidsson/Johanna Larsson (SWE)
Follow this tie as it happens: Live scores or Watch Live
Sofia Arvidsson (SWE) - 08/02/2013
Captain Bettina Fulco (ARG) - 08/02/2013
Paula Ormaechea (ARG) - 08/02/2013
Captain Lars-Anders Wahlgren (SWE) - 08/02/2013