Norwegian tennis star Casper Ruud is excited about representing country in his hometown in this week's Davis Cup tie. Ruud, who was born in Oslo, claimed a 6-3 6-3 win over Uzbekistan's Khumoyun Sultanov. Norway, who is clashing Uzbekistan in a World Group I tie, is on the brink of reaching the Davis Cup qualifiers.
Ruud recently won three consecutive titles and he is enjoying a career-high ranking of No. 10 in the world. "It is a special feeling when you put it like that,” Ruud . “It is probably the best week of my life as rankings-wise I have reached a big goal of my career.
It was a great start to the week and hopefully we can now end the week in a good way. “This really is the perfect week for me to play Davis Cup here. Playing for my country is always special and playing at home is something I enjoy doing.
“The last time we did so was the final match before Covid came so it is special to be back. It is always fun and playing on home soil is a nice, relaxed feeling. I don’t see the rest of the team very often, but some of them I grew up with and went to the same school with.
“We are a young team and we know each other well, so there is good energy in the group. We also have a rookie [Felix Nordby] and he gets to do a lot of work and steps up for the older guys!”
Ruud wants to lead Norway to the Davis Cup Finals
"The ultimate goal for every team is to reach the Finals,” said Ruud.
“Norway has not been to the top of the competition before, but it is something we are fighting for every time we play. It is something which motivates me. “That is the ultimate goal, although the first goal is to win this week.
But we have been talking about it for some time now. Anders has been the captain for 25 years and he is super-motivated. “He is always saying, ‘you are a new era’ and ‘you are the boys to take Norway to the Finals’.
I think we are getting closer than ever before and if we can win this tie, we will be in a good position. “It is not as far away as it has seemed before, and we are all motivated to get there. It would be the perfect way to cap off Anders’ Davis Cup captaincy career. We hope he stays for many years to come, but it would be perfect for him”.