Melbourne, 14 July 2011 |

Australia has drawn Switzerland in the World Group Play-offs to be held from 16 to 18 September this year on home soil.

After completing a 3-1 victory over China last weekend to give themselves a shot at returning to the elite World Group, all attention turned to Wednesday’s draw, which was held in London at the ITF’s headquarters.

Speaking after the draw, Australian captain Pat Rafter had nothing but praise for his team’s upcoming opponent.

“Switzerland will obviously be a tough opponent, but certainly not unbeatable. I will chat with Tony [Roche] and the team about our options in terms of surface etc. but I am excited by the challenge and I know the team will be too.”

The match-up throws up the possibility of Lleyton Hewitt and Roger Federer meeting on court again in a Davis Cup tie. The last time the pair played each other in a Davis Cup tie in Australia it was 2003 and Hewitt made a miracle comeback from two sets and 5-2 down.

The two teams have since met, in Geneva in 2006. On that occasion neither Federer or Hewitt played and the Australians got home 3-2 thanks to Chris Guccione winning the live fifth rubber.

The Australians record against the Swiss is perfect – 4–0 since the teams first met in 1930.

But this Swiss team is much stronger. With two top 20 players in their side – world No.3 Federer and No.16 Wawrinka – and backed up by No.152 Stephane Bohli and No.208 Marco Chiudinelli, the Swiss are no easybeats.

However, in Wimbledon quarterfinalist Tomic and experienced campaigner Hewitt, Australia has two players who are capable of anything on their day.

As the home team, Australia has the right to choose the venue and the surface, which will be announced in the coming weeks.

The other World Group Play-off matches are:
Romania v Czech Republic
Russia v Brazil
Israel v Canada
South Africa v Croatia
Chile v Italy
Japan v India
Belgium v Austria