Re: WG II. Argentina vs Austria thread!
Cravero and Meusberger first up in Buenos Aires
The draw for the Argentina versus Austria Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group II tie took place today in Buenos Aires and, in the opening match, 26-year-old Argentine Jorgelina Cravero will face the experienced Yvonne Musberger from Austria.
The full draw is as follows:
Jorgelina Cravero (ARG) v Yvonne Meusburger (AUT)
Maria-Emilia Salerni (ARG) v Melanie Klaffner (AUT)
Maria-Emilia Salerni (ARG) v Yvonne Meusburger (AUT)
Jorgelina Cravero (ARG) v Melanie Klaffner (AUT)
Maria Irigoyen/Bettina Jozami (ARG) v Patricia Mayr/Barbara Schwartz (AUT)
Cravero made her Fed Cup debut last year and currently holds a 4-0 record in the competition. It will be a first meeting between the two players. Meusberger, 24-years-old from Dornbirn, is currently ranked No. 61 but has only a 2-11 record in Fed Cup. Carvero, from San Francisco, Cordoba, is currently ranked No. 155.
Salerni looks to make experience count
The second match will feature former ITF Junior World Champion Maria Emilia Salerni of Argentina against Melanie Klaffner of Austria. Although only 24, Salerni has already played 26 Fed Cup matches for her country with an 11-6 record in singles. Her opponent is only 17-years-old but has already played five Fed Cup matches and is 1-1 in singles. Salerni is currently ranked No. 93 while Klaffner is ranked No. 350.
The reverse singles will feature Salerni, from Rafaela, against Meusberger and Cravero against Klaffner, from Waidhofen an der Ybbs.
The Argentine captain Ricardo Rivera chose Maria Irigoyen and Betina Jozami for doubles while Austrian captain Alfred Tesar chose Barbara Schwartz and Patricia Mayr. Irigoyen and Mayr are making their Fed Cup debuts for Argentina and Austria, respectively.
The winner of this tie will advance to the Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group Play-offs, hoping for a place in the elite World Group, while the loser will compete in the World Group II Play-offs, hoping to retain a place in World Group II in 2009.
Argentina and Austria missing star names
Rivera noted that his is a young team: “Argentina has to work with these young girls to become competitive over the next years.”
Both captains are without their top players. Argentina’s Gisela Dulko, currently ranked No. 40, is coming off a hip injury incurred during the Australian season while Austria’s Sybille Bammer, ranked No. 19, is suffering from a virus and Tamira Paszek, ranked No. 42, was forced to withdraw after nomination due to a neck injury.
“We can manage this situation,” said Tesar. “But Argentina will play at home and that is a big advantage for them.”
The enormous Estadio Parque Roca in Buenos Aires with over 14,000 seats will be the site this week of the Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group II First Round tie between Argentina and Austria and next week of Argentina’s first round Davis Cup by BNP Paribas round against Great Britain.
Rivera hopes for home support
Both captains praised the courts and the conditions but Rivera, the Argentine captain suggested that perhaps the stadium “was too big for us for Fed Cup. We hope that the people will come to support us.”
The team behind the Fed Cup here in Buenos Aires features two former players in management roles: Mariana Diaz-Oliva, who is due to have her first baby in ten days, and Mercedes Paz. At last night’s Official Dinner, the team honoured Paola Suarez, married only last Saturday, for her contributions to Argentine tennis. Diaz-Olivia played in 22 ties with a 19-14 win/loss record; Paz also in 22 ties with a 21-12 win/loss record and Suarez, a former ITF Doubles World Champion, in 12 ties with a 14-5 win/loss record.
[B]Gisela Dulko - Paula Ormaechea - Maria Kirilenko -