Tennis star Arantxa Rus is again missing from the Dutch selection for the upcoming matches in the Billie Jean King Cup. The best Dutch player in the world ranking (130th) also did not make herself available for the national team at the end of last year, because she wanted to score some points in an attempt to qualify for the main tournament of the Australian Open. Arianne Hartono is also not there. She pulled out injured for the previous Billie Jean King Cup weekend.
For the matches from 10 to 15 April in the Turkish city of Antalya, captain Elise Tamaëla has selected tennis players Suzan Lamens, Lesley Pattinama-Kerkhove, Lexie Stevens and the doubles specialists Demi Schuurs and Bibiane Schoofs. The Netherlands competes with ten other countries in Group 1 of the European/African zone for promotion to the play-offs of the world group.
“I am happy that these players have made themselves available for the team,” said Tamaëla. “It is a new phase and a different format than we are used to. It will be an intensive week, where you have to be there every day. We play with eleven strong countries for three places in the play-off round. It will be a huge challenge to to qualify for the Billie Jean King Cup play-offs. We are definitely going for it.” The Netherlands lost the play-off match with France for a place in the world group last November without Rus and Hartono.
Kiki Bertens travels with the team as an assistant coach. The other participating countries in Turkey are Bulgaria, Croatia, Denmark, Egypt, Hungary, Latvia, Norway, Serbia, Sweden and Turkey.
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