Injured Safin pulls out of Davis Cup tie

MOSCOW: Marat Safin has pulled out of holders Russia's Davis Cup team for next week’s first round World Group tie against the Czech Republic because of a wrist injury. 

“Safin’s injury is more serious than we first anticipated,” Shamil Tarpishchev, Russian tennis chief and their Davis Cup captain, told Reuters yesterday. “It looks like he will be out of action for at least a month.” 

World number three Safin injured his left wrist at the Australian Open earlier this month, forcing him to withdraw from his third round tie against German Rainer Schuettler. 

Last week, Russian coach Sergei Leonyuk said that he saw Safin’s chances to play against the Czechs as 50/50 at best. 

Instead, Davis Cup winner Mikhail Youzhny will lead the Russia as they open their defence of their title in Ostrava. “It's hard to say right now who will carry the main load for us against the Czechs, we'll have to wait and see how everyone is doing next week,” Tarpishchev said. 

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