Install

Get the latest updates as we post them — right on your browser

. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Safin to Lead Russian Team Against France

APMarat Safin
Marat Safin will lead Russia in April's Davis Cup quarterfinal against France.

The former world No. 1 made an impressive return from a seven-month injury layoff at last month's Dubai Open, beating Nikolai Davydenko in his first match. Safin also reached the fourth round at last week's Indian Wells tournament.

Russia captain Shamil Tarpishchev added Safin, who has not played in the Davis Cup since 2005's first round, to a team of world No. 5 Davydenko, Igor Andreyev, Dmitry Tursunov and 2002 Davis Cup final hero Mikhail Youzhny.

"We'll take all five players to France and then I'll choose the best four just before the draw," Tarpishchev said. The quarterfinal will be held at the indoor Sports Palace in Pau on April 7-9. Russia trounced the Netherlands 5-0 in the first round.

The Russians beat France 3-2 in a memorable 2002 final in Paris to win their first Davis Cup title and defeated them again by the same score in last year's quarterfinals in Moscow.

"We have had some great battles with the French over the last few years, and I'm sure our next match will be just as tough," said Tarpishchev.

"But the addition of Safin will give us a greater option. He has been the leader of our team for a long time, and his presence will help other players in many ways."