Thursday, February 9, 2012
Updated: February 10, 12:00 PM ET
Roger Federer to play John Isner
FRIBOURG, Switzerland -- Roger Federer will face John Isner in the second singles match Friday when Switzerland takes on the United States in the first round of the Davis Cup.
Eighth-ranked Mardy Fish will open for the U.S. against No. 28 Stanislas Wawrinka on the indoor clay courts at 7,000-capacity Fribourg Forum.
Isner has lost both matches against the third-ranked Federer, each time on hard courts, and said he aims to serve well and play quick points.
"I don't want to be getting in 15-ball rallies with Roger from the baseline 'cause that probably won't bode well for me," the 17th-ranked Isner said. "I'm going to need to play aggressive, play first-strike tennis and see how it goes."
Fish, who has a 2-0 career record against Wawrinka, is satisfied to be opening the series.
"I would prefer to play first. On a team note, I would like to try to get the team off to a good start," Fish said.
U.S. captain Jim Courier plans to have 19-year-old Ryan Harrison make his Davis Cup debut on Saturday, partnering with Mike Bryan in doubles against Federer and Wawrinka, who won Olympic gold in doubles in Beijing.
Still, that could change depending how deep Fish and Isner go in their singles matches.
"We'll see as we go," Courier said. "That's the team we are nominating now, but certainly things can change given whatever happens (Friday)."
Bryan's twin brother, Bob, is unavailable after his first child was born last week.
In Sunday's scheduled reverse singles, the third-ranked Federer is set to face Fish, followed by Wawrinka against Isner.
The U.S. has a 2-1 edge against Switzerland in Davis Cup matchups, though each series went to the home team on hard courts.
The Americans' dream team of Courier, Andre Aggasi, John McEnroe and Pete Sampras won the 1992 final played at Fort Worth, Texas, and a first-round series when Federer was unavailable in 2009 at Birmingham, Ala.
A 19-year-old Federer led the Swiss to victory in a 2001 first-round match in his home city Basel.