Kwon Soon-woo expressed confidence in his ability to play against nations in the Davis Cup.
“The Davis Cup is a national event, so I’m confident no matter who I play.”
South Korean men’s tennis sensation Kwon Sun-woo (Dangjin City Hall) has vowed to make a splash at the Davis Cup Finals 2023.
Kwon and his team of Nam Ji-sung (Sejong City Hall), Song Min-kyu (KDB), Jung Yoon-seong (Uijeongbu City Hall), and Hong Seong-chan (Sejong City Hall) will open the tournament against Serbia at 10 p.m. KST on Nov. 12 in Valencia, Spain.
Serbia will be represented by Novak Djokovic, who won the US Open the previous day to extend his record to 24 major titles, as well as László Zverev, Miomir Kecsmanovic, Dusan Lajovic, and Nikola Kacic.
Djokovic is likely to skip Korea to recover his form, but even without him, the gap between South Korea and Serbia is huge.
It’s going to be a tough match, but Kwon is unfazed.
In a press conference a day before the match, Kwon said, “I think I played well because I feel responsible for the national team. I have good memories and experiences from last year, so I will be confident and show a good game no matter who I play this year.”
In last year’s final against Canada, Kwon surprised fans by defeating Felix Ojealiassim, then ranked 13th in the world.
Against Spain, he played an evenly matched match against No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz (Spain) before losing.
However, Kwon is currently not at 100%. After being off the court for six months due to shoulder pain, Kwon made her comeback at the US Open but was knocked out in the first round.
“I’m not completely recovered, but the pain has decreased a lot. I think my performance and physical condition are about 60 to 70 percent better,” said Kwon.
“We’ve been playing well at the National Games, so if we do what we’ve been practicing, we’ll definitely have a good chance,” said Song Min-kyu, “and if we take advantage of that chance, we don’t know what will happen.”
Nam Ji-sung, who excelled in doubles last year when paired with Song Min-kyu, said, “Last year I was nervous because it was my first time, so I think I didn’t give 100%, but now that I’ve done it once, I think I’ll be able to give 120% in a better way (this year).”
The Davis Cup Final is a group stage event with the world’s top 16 teams divided into four groups, and this year, Korea was paired with Serbia, the Czech Republic, and Spain in Valencia, Spain.
The Koreans are familiar with the setting, having played their group stage in Valencia at last year’s tournament.
“I think it was easier to adapt this time because I’ve been here before,” said Hong. I could feel that the experience of having been here once was great,” said Hong.
Coach Kim Young-jun said that he will send Kwon “Ace” Soon-woo to play first singles and Hong Seong-chan to play second singles, while the doubles team will be Song Min-gyu and Nam Ji-seong.
“We won’t know until the end of the match. We will aim for the Czech Republic, which is a bit weaker (in terms of power), and Spain, which is missing Alcazar, 먹튀검증 so we will try to take advantage of those variables,” he said.