Nadal: Spain accepts Madrid Davis Cup venue - but not Munoz

Other News Materials 12 May 2008 23:45 (UTC +04:00)

Spanish number one Rafael Nadal said his Davis Cup team accepted to play a semi-final tie against holders United States in Madrid, but reiterated his criticism on the nation's tennis supremo Pedro Munoz, the dpa reported.

"We accept that we have to go to Madrid, but we don't accept the president," Nadal told reporters at the Hamburg Masters on Monday.

"We are angry with the president, we don't believe in him."

The entire Spanish Davis Cup team last week sent a letter to Munoz in which they expressed their fury that they weren't able to chose the semi-final venue as promised initially by Munoz.

They stopped short of boycotting the September 19-21 tie and calling for Munoz resignation, but said they would not engage in any sponsor and promotion activities by the national federation.

World number two Nadal and fellow-players like David Ferrer and Carlos Moya wanted to play a tie on sea level and not the 650 metres altitude of Madrid because they feared a Madrid tie would take away their advantage on clay against Andy Roddick and company.

"It is more difficult to beat the Americans at 650m. The players preferred a sea-level match," said Nadal.

However, Nadal acknowledged that Madrid was "a very important city." The Madrid tourist board recently signed a three-year sponsorship deal with the Davis Cup team and the capital is bidding for the 2016 Olympics.

The governing body ITF confirmed earlier Monday that the tie will take place at the bullrink Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas which seats more than 20,000.

Spain beat the US in Seville for the 2004 title, but lost to them in the quarter-finals last year.

The other semi-final tie between Argentina and Russia will also take place on clay, at the Estadio Parque Roca in Buenos Aires, the ITF said.