Barcelona: Spain`s new Davis Cup captain Conchita Martinez sprung a surprise on Tuesday by naming world number seven David Ferrer in her team for next week`s Group I tie away to Russia.
Ferrer was not expected to make himself available for the July 17-19 match in Vladivostok following a dispute between top players and the Spanish tennis federation (RFET) over the appointment last year of Gala Leon as the nation`s first female Davis Cup captain.
After weeks of upheaval at the federation and the naming of a new president, Leon was sacked last week and Martinez, a former Wimbledon champion who is also Spain`s Fed Cup captain, was named to replace her until the end of the year.
Ferrer will be joined in the Spain team by Pablo Andujar, Daniel Gimeno-Traver, Marc Lopez and David Marrero, Martinez told a news conference in Barcelona.
The five-times winners, missing the likes of Rafa Nadal, Feliciano Lopez and Tommy Robredo, need a victory to have a chance of getting back into the elite World Group for next year`s competition.
Russia named their team earlier on Tuesday featuring the relatively little-known Konstantin Kravchuk, Evgeny Donskoy, Andrey Rublev and Karen Kachanov.