Gavrilova named in Fed Cup team

Russian-born Daria Gavrilova has been rushed into make her Fed Cup debut in Australia’s World Group play-off tie against the United States in Brisbane.

Gavrilova was called-up just two weeks after her eligibility was cleared by the International Tennis Federation.

Arina Rodionova will partner Casey Dellacqua in the doubles for the April 16-17 tie on clay at Pat Rafter Arena, with Samantha Stosur to lead the singles charge alongside Gavrilova.

Gavrilova was the WTA’s newcomer of the year in 2015 after rocketing up the rankings from outside the top 200, and has continued her rise in 2016 to currently stand at No.36 after reaching the fourth round of the Australian Open in January.

The 22-year-old is a significant inclusion as Australia bids to regain their place in the elite eight-team World Group for 2017.

With Stosur Australia’s most successful Fed Cup singles player, captain Alicia Molik believes her team boasts a strong mix of youth and experience that can get the job done against the USA.

“We’re thrilled for Dasha to make her Fed Cup debut for Australia on home soil next weekend and we know she’ll bring great energy and a fighting spirit to the team,” Molik said.

“Sam is our most experienced Fed Cup player and will really enjoy the opportunity to play in front of her home crowd at Pat Rafter Arena, and Casey and Arina add great depth to the squad.”

This month’s tie marks the 14th meeting between the two Fed Cup powerhouses, with the USA taking an 8-5 advantage into the clash.

The USA won the teams’ most recent showdown in 1985 and will enter the tie with a record 17 Fed Cup titles.

Australia sit third on the all-time list of champions with seven Fed Cup victories, the most recent in 1974.

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