World No 1 Novak Djokovic will compete with Serbia in the revamped Davis Cup this November in Madrid, the country’s tennis federation confirmed on Monday, ending doubts about the star player’s appearance.
“We have fantastic news: Novak will participate in the final tournament in Madrid. I had the opportunity to discuss it with him in New York,” Serbia’s team coach Nenad Zimonjic said in a statement.
The Serb is currently defending his title in New York at the US open. “It’s a huge boost to have Novak. I am very happy to see him join the team after a long absence,” Zimonjic added.
The 32-year-old, who led Serbia to a maiden Davis Cup in 2010, hasn’t played in the tournament since 2017, when Serbia qualified for the semi-finals by defeating Spain 4-1.
Last year he did not show much enthusiasm for the new Davis Cup format, in which 18 teams will be split into three groups, with the winners and two best runners-up to reach the quarter-finals.
In October Djokovic said he was unsure about his participation given the competition’s proximity to the rival ATP World Team Cup at the start of the 2020 season.
“I just feel like the date of the Davis Cup is really bad, especially for the top players,” he said at the time.
Serbia will play their first Davis Cup match in Madrid against Japan on 20 November, before facing France the following day.
Before that, Djokovic is expected to play in the London Masters,the final of which is set for 17 November, according to the Serbian tennis federation.