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Moodie: Don’t write us off
- Updated: September 16, 2010
While South Africa’s highest ranked doubles player, Wesley Moodie, admitted the visitors would be up against it in the Davis Cup World Group play-off against Germany this weekend, he warned that anyone underestimating them would do so at their own peril.
Following the withdrawal of the nation’s top ranked singles player, Kevin Anderson, due to a foot injury, South Africa’s chances of victory at the Weissenhof Tennis Club in Stuttgart have been significantly reduced, but Moodie believes the tourists are still in with a solid chance of victory.
“The Germans have some good, experienced players, but we definitely still have a chance,” Moodie, the world’s 20th ranked player, said. “There is no doubt we’re the underdogs, and Kevin was a big loss for us because he’s our one player who can consistently beat all these guys on clay. But a lot of it depends on the day and the environment in which you’re playing.
“The format of the Davis Cup gives lower ranked players a real chance against anyone, and I think the Germans are also under more pressure than us because they’re expected to win. We’ve got a great bunch of guys in our team and we’ll be giving each-other plenty of support.”
Moodie, the winner of the 2005 Japan Open singles title and the 2005 Wimbledon doubles title with Australian Stephen Huss, has been in superb form this season after recovering from an injury that kept him off the circuit for two months in February and March.
The 31-year-old has reached three semif-inals, two quarter-finals and one final in Grand Slam events this season, partnering Belgian Dick Norman in men’s doubles and Lisa Raymond of the US in mixed doubles.┬áHe reached the quarterf-inals of both doubles formats at the recent US Open.
“I was fairly pleased with my performances at the US Open. I was hoping to have done a little better, but I’m happy with where I am at the moment,” he said. I needed to improve my ranking after I was sidelined for a couple of months, and fortunately I’ve had some good results.”
Moodie still has a handful of ATP events on his schedule this season, and his wife, Marcia, is expecting their second child in February next year, which will give him a couple of months enforced┬á rest while on “father duty”.
But before he looks ahead, he has all his focus on the task at hand, and a crucial doubles match with Jeff Coetzee on Saturday that could decide whether or not the South Africans qualify for the prestigious World Group for the first time in 12 years.
With pride of the nation at stake, and everything to gain, Moodie and his team-mates will give everything they have to cause an upset.
“Clay is not our best surface, and Germany have the advantage of a home crowd, so the odds are stacked against us,” Moodie said. “But I don’t think anyone can say we don’t have a chance.ÔÇØ