Davis Cup ties to remain best-of-five sets

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International Tennis Federation (ITF) president David Haggerty has expressed his disappointment after a proposal to reduce Davis Cup singles rubbers to best-of-three tiebreak sets were not passed.

It appeared that a significant change to the 117-year-old team event could be afoot when the ITF directors agreed that there should no longer be five-set singles matches.

Haggerty has insisted that there is no doubt change is needed in both the Davis Cup and Fed Cup going forward.

We could still be in for some marathon Davis Cup contests, though, as the idea of changing to best-of-three singles matches did not get the vote at an ITF AGM in Vietnam on Friday.

Although 63.54 per cent of votes from member nations were in favour of three-set Davis Cup ties, a majority of two thirds was required for the change to be made.

Haggerty said: "We respect the decision of the AGM but are disappointed that our member nations have not approved the full package of Davis Cup and Fed Cup reforms endorsed by the ITF Board. 

"Change is needed to ensure the long-term future of these iconic and historic competitions, and we remain committed to working with our national associations and other stakeholders on finding ways to enhance Davis Cup and Fed Cup by BNP Paribas."

Finalists in both the Davis Cup and Fed Cup will be given the choice of hosting their first-round tie in the following year, while match court availability and practice court requirements will be lower to reduce hosting costs for national associations.