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You are here: Tennis Davis Cup Raonic helps Canada retain World Group berth

Raonic helps Canada retain World Group berth

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The Canadian Davis Cup team will remain in the World Group for Davis Cup by BNP Paribas next year after defeating South Africa 4-1 in a World Group play-off tie held outdoors this weekend at Uniprix Stadium in Montreal.

After Daniel Nestor and Vasek Pospisil were unable to clinch the tie for Canada in Saturday's doubles rubber losing in straight sets, Milos Raonic secured the winning point for his country with a decisive 6-2, 6-2, 6-4 victory over Izak Van Der Merwe in Sunday's first reverse singles rubber between the teams' no. 1 players.

Raonic was dominant from the first ball, getting an early break in all three sets to maintain control throughout the match. The 21-year-old executed both on serve and with his groundstrokes, continually keeping his opponent on his heels.

"I am proud to be part of this new era of Canadian tennis." Raonic said." It's great to be back in the World Group, there's a lot of time between now and February for us all to improve so that we can improve our chances of advancing further in the World Group in 2013."

Frank Dancevic (Niagara Falls, ON) capped the weekend with a 6-2, 6-2 triumph over Nikala Scholtz, who was appearing in his first Davis Cup tie for South Africa.

"To qualify for the World Group for two straight years shows that we can consistently perform at a high level," said Team Canada captain Martin Laurendeau. "It was a great team effort this week starting with the way we practiced, the way we prepared for the tie, and the way we executed and played the matches."

This is the first time since 1991-'92 that Canada has qualified for the World Group in consecutive years. Only 16 nations entered in Davis Cup play qualify for the elite World Group. The draw for opponent and choice of ground will take place this Wednesday, September 19 in London at 11:00 a.m. local time (6 a.m. ET). The World Group first round tie will be played from February 1-3, 2013.