Estonia tennis team loses key player Zopp in the opening Davis Cup tie against SA
Estonia suffered a major blow when their top player Jurgen Zopp was forced to retire hurt in the opening match of the Europe/Africa Group II Davis Cup tie in Pretoria on Friday.
After dominating Nik Scholtz with his forehand to win the first set 6-4‚ Zopp lost the next two sets 4-6 3-6 before quitting at the start of the fourth after receiving medical attention.
Zopp was suffering from abdominal muscle strain‚ which was particularly painful while serving.
He could not say if he would play again in the tie.
“The serve is the most important shot in these conditions‚” said Zopp who‚ at 317 in the world‚ was 200 ranking points above Scholtz and was central to Estonia’s chances here.
“I was feeling it for quite some time‚ but hoping the adrenaline would get me through. I feel so bad for my team‚ I feel like I let them down.”
Scholtz had survived some scares in the third set‚ saving a break point in the first game and then three in the fifth before breaking Zopp in the eighth.
SA's No.1 player‚ Lloyd Harris‚ is facing Vladimir Ivanov in the second singles match of the day.
- TMG Digital