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Czech team to come full strength, India need a miracle, says Bhupathi

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Saturday, 1 August,New Delhi: The Indian Davis Cup team needs to pull off a miracle of sorts if it has to advance to the elite World Group, says Mahesh Bhupathi as the veteran doubles exponent revealed that Czech Republic will field a full strength team in the next month’s Play-off tie, here.

World number six Tomas Berdych and multiple Grand Slam winner Radek Stepanek had skipped their last tie against Australia but Bhupathi, who is in touch with Tour players, says they will play against India.

“Unfortunately, I have got a message from Tomas Berdych last evening asking about hotel details. So they are coming with full strength team. So it’s gonna be hard,” Bhupathi told reporters on the sidelines of an IPTL event here.

The three-time Champions (2013, 2012, 1980) have not official named the team as yet.

Bhupathi said there would be no such thing as home advantage when you play against players of the calibre of Berdych and Stepanek.

“Czech Republic have won two titles of the last four years, so it’s going to be very tough match. We are playing Radek Stepanek and Tomas Berdych, so our guys need to pull off a miracle to have a shot,” he said.

“But never say never in Davis Cup. We will put up a good fight I am sure,” he added.

The World Group Play-off tie will be held at R K Khanna Tennis stadium from September 18-20.

Talking about junior Wimbledon doubles champion Sumit Nagal, who trains in Germany with Bhupathi’s support, he said,” For Sumit it’s lot of confidence wining the junior Wimbledon doubles. The transition from junior to senior is about taking 200 steps and he has to do it one by one. Next three four years are going to be defining for him. We will try to give as much support as possible.”

PTI