Tomic named Australia's youngest Davis Cup player
SYDNEY: Australia named Bernard Tomic, 17, as their youngest ever Davis Cup player on Tuesday, shrugging off last month's Australian Open rant and his ongoing feud with Lleyton Hewitt.
Tomic, called up after injuries to Hewitt and Chris Guccione, will be 17 years and 135 days old for the Asia Oceania Group One clash against Taiwan at Melbourne Park, beating John Alexander's 1968 record by 42 days.
"This is a crucial tie for us," said Australia's Davis Cup captain John Fitzgerald. "(Taiwan) has some talented young players and as we have seen before, anything can happen in Davis Cup."
Wildcard Tomic, currently ranked 210, took world number 14 Marin Cilic to five sets in the Australian Open's second round before complaining bitterly about the 2:10 am finish, earning a dressing-down from officials.
Father and coach John Tomic reportedly threatened to shift his son to Croatia, during a row with the Australian Open's tournament director Craig Tilley after the controversial match.
The teen has also argued openly with Hewitt, who said Tomic was not qualified for Davis Cup tennis after he reportedly snubbed a practice match with the former world number one at Wimbledon last year.
Fitzgerald said he believed there was a "good balance of experience and youth" in the four-man side, which includes world number 75 Peter Luczak, Davis Cup veteran Carsten Ball and doubles specialist Paul Hanley.
The first-round contest takes place between March 5 and 7 at Melbourne's Margaret Court arena.