Without Berdych, Czechs to face Australia with 2 rookies

PRAGUE (AP) Weakened by the absence of three players, the Czech Republic is set to face Australia in the first round of Davis Cup with two rookies.

The Czechs will miss No. 10-ranked Tomas Berdych, who announced this month he wouldn't be available because he wanted to focus on the ATP tour.

Czech Republic captain Jaroslav Navratil will also miss Lukas Rosol and Adam Pavlasek for the Feb. 3-5 series on an outdoor hard court at the Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club in Melbourne.

Navratil named inexperienced Jan Satral, ranked 164th, and Zdenek Kolar, ranked 238th, to the team for the first time.

Jiri Vesely and veteran Radek Stepanek will lead the Czechs.

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide — from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Grant Wahl, Andy Staples and more — delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.