Zim, Italy square up


Ndamu Sandu

RELEGATION-threatened Zimbabwe and Italy square up in a crucial Euro Africa Zone third round Group One Davis Cup tennis extravaganza that explodes into life at the City Sport

s Centre today.


The two teams’ stay in the tournament is on a knife-edge and succumbing to defeat for any team would mean relegation to the unfashionable Euro African Zone Group Two.


Led by 22-year-old Filipo Volandri, the Italians who arrived in the country last week, although looking weak, are no pushovers.


Volandri has under his belt the Cagliari Open in Italy and is a singles matches specialist. The right-handed player is ranked 49th in the world tennis charts.


Other members include Davide Sanguinetti ranked 77th in the singles charts. Giorgio Galimberti and Massimo Bertlini who have been playing in the doubles matches complete the Italian team.


The duo will fight it out with local tennis version of the ‘Woodies’, Wayne and Kevin Ullyett, in the doubles matches.


The doubles mainstay makes a welcome return to the team after missing Zimbabwe’s loss to Israel in Tel Aviv in June. The Wayne Black-led Zimbabwe team cannot afford to lose as they have a mission to redeem lost pride.