Paul Munyuki Sports Reporter
THE Zimbabwe Davis Cup side for the Europe/Africa Group II tie against hosts Finland believe they are capable of overcoming Finland when the two sides clash today.
Zimbabwe’s trio of playing captain Martin Dzuwa, Courtney Lock and Mark Fynn has been in Finland since Sunday while Takanyi Garanganga was delayed by visa complications.
The match will be played in Kittilä and Zimbabwe will have to deal with the weather conditions, freezing temperatures, and opponents who will be powered by a passionate home support.
According to reports from Finland, the tie will be played in Kittilä due to the huge influx of tourists who visit the town during winter.
“I think the guys are pretty much okay apart from the weather but it’s part of the game and so far so good, we are looking forward to Friday,” said Dzuwa.
“We have done our research and I think Courtney knows one of the members, they played juniors together, so it will be interesting.”
And to show how serious — or desperate — the Finnish are taking this tie, they have recalled retired Jarkko Nieminen to be part of the team.
The hosts said they would not be lured into complacency.
“That Zimbabwe’s top player (Garanganga) is arriving late and has not had time to practice here does not impair our judgment nor does it make our situation better,” said Nieminen.
“I am well prepared and I have been waiting for a couple of months now to return to Davis Cup. I’m really excited.” The first singles match will see Nieminen taking on Lock while Harri Heliövaara faces Garanganga in the second of the day.
Tomorrow’s doubles action will see the Finnish duo of Kontinen and Nieminen facing Fynn and Garanganga
Sunday will be for the reverse singles where Nieminen takes on Garanganga while Heliövaara faces Lock with the captains having the right to change players an hour before the start of the match.