World number seven Marin Cilic will spearhead Croatia’s bid for just a second Davis Cup triumph when they face France in Lille later this month, the Croatian tennis federation said Tuesday.
Cilic, 30, will be joined by Borna Coric, ranked 12th, as well as Franko Skugor, Mate Pavic and Ivan Dodig, a federation statement said.
“Croatia coach Zeljko Krajan remained loyal to the players who secured victory in the semi-final against the United States,” said a statement.
The 21-year-old Coric secured Croatia’s 3-2 semi-final victory after beating Davis Cup debutant Frances Tiafoe in the decisive match.
The Davis Cup final takes place in Lille, France on November 23-25 on clay courts.
It will be Croatia’s third final after winning the 2005 title and losing in 2016 to Argentina.
Last year, the French beat Belgium in the final to claim their 10th crown. In 2014 they lost to a Swiss team led by Roger Federer and Stan Wawrinka.
The meeting is a repeat of the football World Cup final in July in Moscow, which France won, 4-2.
Meanwhile, France’s Davis Cup team captain Yannick Noah said he will not name a replacement for Richard Gasquet after the world number 26 pulled out of the final due to injury.
Gasquet’s decision, made on Monday when he cited an unspecified injury, leaves France relying on Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Lucas Pouille for the singles rubbers of the November 23-25 final against Croatia in Lille.
Noah, a French Open winner in 1983, has also selected Jeremy Chardy and doubles pair Nicolas Mahut and Pierre-Hugues Herbert.
The 58-year-old has also selected Benoit Paire and Julien Benneteau as reserves in the event of a late withdrawal.
France hold 10 Davis Cup titles and will defend their 2017 crown against a Croatia team that has triumphed only once, in 2005.
With AFP inputs