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Andy Murray ‘Right’ to Miss QuarterFinal of Davis Cup says Captain

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Andy Murray is right to rest and not play in this week’s Davis Cup quarter-final against Serbia in Belgrade, says captain Leon Smith.

The Wimbledon champion has not missed a Davis Cup tie for over three years.

But Smith said: “Quite rightly he has to look after his body and his mind. He’s got his eyes set on getting some rest and really making a big push for the Olympics, US Open and beyond.”

Kyle Edmund and James Ward will play singles for holders Great Britain.

The quarter-final begins on clay in the Tasmajdan Stadium on Friday.

Although not playing, BBC Sport understands Murray is expected to fly out to support his team-mates.

“We would love him to come out and support. We are a really, really close unit,” Smith told BBC Sport.

“I fully understand if he doesn’t end up coming, but if he does it just gives everyone a boost to see your number one player, role model and current Wimbledon champion sitting there.

“We’ve seen him before – in Glasgow last March [for the tie against the US] – going bananas at the side of the court.”

Dan Evans was also initially named in the team but did not travel to Belgrade because of a shoulder injury and “a couple of issues at home”.

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The world number 73 had an MRI scan after his run to the third round of Wimbledon and, although it showed no damage, the problem flared again when Evans started practising on clay.

“After five or 10 minutes of hitting it was clear that something wasn’t quite right – even though he’d been checked in the morning before playing,” Smith explained.

“That started to create some doubt, but then also he had a couple of issues at home that led to me thinking that he was not in the right headspace to travel.”

James Ward, who has fallen to 240 in the world rankings, will play instead – having initially planned to compete in this week’s grass court tournament in Rhode Island.

Novak Djokovic, beaten in the third round at Wimbledon, and the world number 32 Viktor Troicki have chosen to sit out the tie for Serbia.

Murray won all eight of his singles rubbers during Great Britain’s Davis Cup victory last year and contributed to 11 of their 12 points.

World number 67 Edmund made his debut in last year’s final against Belgium, while Ward earned a crucial win against American John Isner in the first round last year.


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