Canada draws top-ranked Spain in Davis Cup

Canada's Milos Raonic serves to South Africa's Izak van der Merwe during their Davis Cup match in...

Canada's Milos Raonic serves to South Africa's Izak van der Merwe during their Davis Cup match in Montreal, Que., Sept. 16, 2012. (CHRISTINNE MUSCHI/Reuters)

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:44 AM ET

Canada is facing the likelihood of another playoff tie to stay in the Davis Cup World Group in 2014.

After easily beating South Africa in a playoff tie last weekend to stay in the elite group of 16 next year, Canada drew a tough opponent Wednesday for the first round in February -- top-ranked, Rafael Nadal-led Spain. Canada is No. 12 in the Davis Cup rankings.

There was some good news, though. The tie Feb. 1-3 will be played in Canada, not on the clay courts of Spain.

"Spain is a tough team, but when you are in an elite group of 16 countries every team is going to be tough," Canadian captain Martin Laurendeau said. "We want to be the first Canadian team to ever win a World Group tie and we will continue to work towards that for February. We get to host them in Canada, in front of our home crowd and we will use that to our advantage and are really looking forward to this opportunity."

Spain is the defending Davis Cup champion and will play the Czech Republic to win the 2012 title. Spain has won the Davis Cup five times.

The two countries have met only one other time, in 1991 when Spain posted a 4-1 win. That tie was held in Spain, which meant Canada was given the choice of hosting this time around.

The venue for the tie has not been determined yet. But it will be held on a hard court, which theoretically will help the Canadians and big-serving Milos Raonic.

"The Spaniards win everything from clay to grass, to indoors to outdoors," Laurendeau said, taking some steam out of that thinking. "They're good and they have the depth to really not be fooled by any kind of surface."


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