Norway Davis Cup team

Norway
Flag of Norway.svg
Captain Anders Håseth
ITF ranking 39 Increase 5 (6 December 2021)
First year 1928
Years played 85
Ties played (W–L) 144 (58−86)
Years in
World Group
1
Best finish World Group play-off (1995)
Most total wins Stian Boretti (38−37)
Most singles wins Stian Boretti (26−19)
Most doubles wins Stian Boretti (12−18)
Best doubles team Stian Boretti/Erling Tveit (6−7)
Most ties played Stian Boretti (39)
Most years played Stian Boretti (15)

The Norway Davis Cup team represents Norway in the Davis Cup competition and is governed by the Norwegian Tennis Association.

Norway currently compete in World Group I. They never qualified for the World Group in the old Davis Cup format, though they reached the World Group Play-offs in 1995. They have still yet to participate in the new format's Davis Cup Finals.

History

Before World War II (1928–39)

Torleif Torkildsen (left) and Jack Nielsen (right) the first ever Norwegian Davis Cup line-up

Norway competed in its first Davis Cup in 1928, with Torleif Torkildsen taking Norway's first win, at home in a 1–4 defeat to Hungary. Torkildsen was a main feature of Norway's side in the early seasons, with a 1–9 record between 1928 and 1932.

Norway was relegated to the qualifying rounds after 1933, but turned out their best result the following year, losing 2–3 in their third meeting with Hungary. Finn-Trygve Smith gave away a two-set lead in the first rubber, but Emil Gabori defeated Smith in the final rubber to win the game for Hungary. This also marked Johan Haanes' Davis Cup debut; Haanes registered a 6–23 record in a 17-year career interrupted by World War II, and only three Norwegian wins during his career was not due to Haanes.

Norway did not enter in 1935, but returned in 1936 with another 2–3 result against 1933 quarter-finalists Belgium at home. André Lacroix won all his three games for Belgium and prevented Norway's first tie victory.

The advances were temporary. Norway lost 15 successive rubbers up to 1939, and though they advanced to the quarter-final in 1939, that was only due to a forfeit from the invaded Czechoslovakia.

Never beyond the second round (1947–1972)

Norway did not enter the first Davis Cup after the war, but in 1947 Norway nearly eliminated New Zealand in their first ever match for eight years. Haanes and Jan Staubo both won a singles match each, but New Zealand turned the tables after four- and five-set victories in the final singles matches.

Haanes continued good form the following season, defeating Geoffrey Paish as Norway went down 1–4 to a Great Britain which would reach the semi-finals. Successive 0–5 defeats to a Lennart Bergelin-led Sweden team followed, before Johan Haanes won his final Davis Cup game in 1951. Adly El-Shafei won all his three games, though, and Egypt eliminated Norway.

In 1953, Norway achieved their first victory, with Nils-Erik Hessen, Rolf Pape and Finn Søhol defeating Luxembourg in Mondorf-les-Bains. All were mainstays in the side throughout the 1950s, and featured in Norway's 1954 win over Finland (3–2). Søhol also helped Norway defeat Israel by 4–1 in the 1956 tournament, which also gave the first win for Gunnar Sjøwall. However, five defeats followed, and it was not until Norway drew Portugal in 1963 and 1964 that they managed to win again. Norway went 9–1 on aggregate in these two clashes, with Søhol the only loser, and in the 1963 second round tie against Denmark Sjøwall defeated Jørgen Ulrich, a player who had reached the round of 16 at Wimbledon on two occasions. An 18-year-old Per Hegna also participated; he lost all his three games and didn't participate in the Davis Cup for ten years, but was to become a key player for Norway later.

Following the wins over Portugal, Norway struggled once more. They did manage a 4–1 win over Luxembourg in 1968, with Fridtjof Prydz (4 wins, 11 losses) winning both singles matches; doubles specialist Erik Melander (5 wins, 8 losses) had debuted the previous year in France, and the doubles team of Melander and Prydz got Norway's only win in the 1–4 loss to Israel in the 1971. Prydz and Jon-Erik Ross (2 wins, 11 losses) also defeated Egypt's doubles team in 1970.

First quarterfinal, and 80s struggles (1973–1988)

In 1973 Norway had to play preliminary qualifying matches for the first time since 1934. Hegna returned to Davis Cup play, and on an indoor court in Dublin Hegna, Melander, Finn-Dag Jagge and Thorvald Moe swept Ireland aside by 5–0 (though Melander and Moe had to play a 42-game set in the doubles match), and received a home first round clash with Denmark, where Hegna won both his singles matches and Norway eked out a 3–2 win. Norway reached the quarter-finals for the first time since 1939, where they failed to win a set in France and lost 30–92 in games. Hegna and Melander faced François Jauffret and Patrick Proisy, who had both reached the last four at Roland Garros and at the time both were ranked in the top 40, in the singles matches.

Nevertheless, Norway were not qualified for the main draw in the European Zone in 1974, and after Hegna and Thorvald Moe secured a 4–1 win over Iran they required to beat Spain in a play-off in Barcelona. Norway performed even worse than against France the previous year, winning only 26 of 116 games.

Then followed five preliminary round losses, with only Hegna able to secure solitary match wins in ties with Morocco and Netherlands. Hegna also won all three of his matches as Norway beat Turkey in 1980, but in the final qualifier against West Germany Norway won 18 games in four matches. Norway were thus two wins away for qualifying for the modern-day World Group, which was instituted in 1981. Instead, Norway remained in the European qualifying zone.

Hegna retired in 1981, only returning for a single dead rubber match in 1983, and in the seven years of one single European qualifying zone Norway only defeated Portugal on the tennis court, in 1984.

In 1986 Norway became the first European nation to lose to Nigeria, falling 0–5 in Lagos, and they were also the first European nation to lose to Senegal the following year. Three players debuted against Senegal; Bent Ove Pedersen and Audun Jensen lost the doubles match, while Anders Håseth played singles with one win and one loss.

As a result of the defeat to Senegal, Norway were assigned to Group Two of the Europe/Africa Zone when this was instituted in 1988. Norway reached the semi-final, losing to Ireland on grass in Belfast. The five-set doubles match became crucial, where Matt Doyle and Peter Wright won 6–4 in the final set, and Ireland went on to promote to Group One.

Ruud era (1989–2000)

Still in Group Two, Norway lost 2–3 to Luxembourg in 1989, the debut match of 16-year-old Christian Ruud, who along with Pedersen would form the basis of the team in the 1990s. The following year Norway reached a promotion play-off to Poland, where they lost after Ruud and Pedersen failed to win any singles matches, though Anders Rolfsen won a doubles match as part of a streak of six successive doubles match wins before he and Pedersen lost in straight sets to Poland in the 1992 relegation play-off, which Norway still won. The streak was part of Norway's 13–2 season in the 1991 Davis Cup, where they promoted from Division One after defeating Luxembourg in the play-off, but they lost to Finland in their first Group One match in 1992 and needed the play-off to survive.

A similar story unfolded in the 1993 season; brothers Byron and Wayne Black from Zimbabwe swept through 4–1 in Riksanlegget for tennis at Hasle, with only Pedersen winning a match, and Norway required a win in Helsinki. Ruud came up with a straight sets win over Tuomas Ketola as Norway got revenge for their 1992 defeat, won 3–2, and survived for another year.

The 1994 Davis Cup saw Ruud win both his singles matches, including a five-setter against world No. 6 Goran Ivanišević. However, Ruud and Pedersen couldn't win the doubles match, and the number two singles players weren't good enough against Ivanišević and Saša Hiršzon (world No. 250).

In 1995 Norway won their first round tie for the first time in four attempts; against Israel, newly relegated from the World Group, Ruud defeated Eyal Ran and Gilad Bloom, both top-200 players. The win qualified Norway for a World Group play-off match with Belgium, but Dick Norman and Johan Van Herck were too strong, and won 5–0 at Hasle, only conceding one set.

Norway were relegated the following year, as world No. 31 Andrei Medvedev won both singles matches and Ukraine took a 4–1 win in Kyiv. They spent the following years promoting and relegating alternatively; a play-off win over Portugal in Oporto was followed by defeats to Romania and Croatia, in a match 19-year-old Ivan Ljubičić won all three matches and sent Norway down into Group Two.

Up and down with Andersen/Boretti (2000–07)

It took a further four years to be promoted to Group One again, as after the 3–2 win over Israel Norway lost the services of Ruud after 31 wins, the highest number by a Norwegian. Stian Boretti and Jan Frode Andersen nevertheless went through the 2002 season with wins over Egypt, Denmark and Ivory Coast, and Norway entered Group One for the sixth and thus far last time.

They were outmatched at that level, however. Andersen and Boretti nearly defeated Jürgen Melzer and Alexander Peya, who would five months later reach the final of the Austrian Open doubles tournament, at home in the first round match in February, coming back from two sets down to take it into a fifth, and Norway faced matches with Finland and Luxembourg to survive in Group One. However, the task was too much against top-200 players Jarkko Nieminen (Finland) and Gilles Müller (Luxembourg), and Norway were relegated.

From 2004 until 2006, Andersen and Boretti were the mainstay of the team, with only Boretti missing one match. Norway played eight matches during their four-year stay in Group Two, achieving a 3–5 record with wins over Ukraine, Monaco (in first of two relegation play-offs) and Zimbabwe. Boretti had to retire from a 2006 tie in Macedonia, where Norway were 1–2 down before the final day's singles matches, and Erling Tveit took Lazar Magdinčev into a fifth set. Magdinčev won 6–2, however, leaving the final match redundant as Norway failed to make the promotion play-off, which Macedonia later won. When Andersen retired before 2007, it prompted a historically poor performance from Norway, as they lost to Hungary at home before Lamine Ouahab of Algeria won his three matches and sent Norway down into Group Three of the Europe/Africa zone for the first time.

Among the weakest teams in Europe (2008–11)

Norway began their life in the zone's second lowest tier at the 2008 tournament, hosted in Armenia. Despite Boretti winning all his singles matches, Norway lost two rubbers, to Moldova and to Lithuania, the latter after 6–8 in the tie-breaker in the final doubles match. Norway thus finished third, just outside the promotion spot to Group Two.

On clay in Tunisia during the 2009 tournament, however, Norway had managed to secure the services of Erling Tveit, which helped to strengthen the side and secure promotion. Boretti and Tveit did nearly all the work, playing five singles and four doubles ties each, and despite a loss to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Norway won the final two matches over Tunisia and Morocco to secure promotion. It was Norway's first Davis Cup win over Morocco in three attempts, and both Moroccans were top 500 ATP players. Boretti won by only dropping a game and Tveit won 6–1 in the final set of the three-set encounters.

However, Norway dropped straight back after losses to Slovenia and Monaco; the latter team had no players in the top 400, but Norway still only won one set in the decisive three matches, and fell 0–5. In Group III the following year, Norway still fielded a team of Boretti and Tveit, though both players had now retired from the challenger tour. Norway's promotion hopes stopped one match before the play-off, losing to Turkey, who later promoted and had also been relegated from division II the previous year, after a final-set tie-break in the doubles match.

A new era (2015–)

Led by a 16 year old Casper Ruud and an 18 year old Viktor Durasovic Norway gained promotion from Group III up to Group II in 2015. The following years Norway have stayed in Group II, but they keep on working for the promotion. They are led by ATP Tour player Casper Ruud, the son of former player Christian Ruud. In March 2020, Norway qualified for the 2020 Davis Cup World Group I

In 2021 Norway beat Uzbekistan and Ukraine and qualified for the Davis Cup play offs in 2022.

Current team

Players

Members of the Norway Davis Cup team that have played matches
Player Caps Win–loss overall Debut Last or most recent match Ref.
Singles Doubles Total Date Opponent Date Opponent
Fredrik Aarum 3 0–3 0–0 0–3 5 May 2002  Egypt 9 February 2004  Austria
Olav Abrahamsen 1 0–2 0–0 0–2 24 September 1977  Poland 26 September 1977  Poland
Øyvind Alver 1 0–1 0–0 0–1 27 April 2001  Estonia 29 April 2001  Estonia
Jan Frode Andersen 24 30–23 25–14 55–37 20 September 1996  Ukraine 23 July 2006  North Macedonia
Birger Andersen-Brem 2 0–0 0–2 0–2 26 May 1939  Belgium 18 May 1946  New Zealand
Peter August Anker 1 0–1 0–0 0–1 3 February 2018  Egypt 4 February 2018  Egypt
Fredrik Ask 1 0–2 1–1 1–3 9 May 2008  Armenia 11 July 2010  Monaco
Jens-Johan Beer 1 0–1 0–0 0–1 8 May 1937  France 10 May 1937  France
Jarl Bibow 1 0–1 1–1 1–1 1 May 1964  Portugal 16 May 1965  South Africa
Joachim Bjerke 1 3–4 6–0 9–4 14 May 2011  Andorra 17 July 2015  North Macedonia
Dick Bjurstedt 1 0–2 0–0 0–2 8 May 1937  France 10 May 1937  France
Stian Boretti 1 26–19 12–18 38–37 21 July 2000  Greece 6 April 2014  Monaco
Simen Sunde Bratholm 1 1–2 0–1 1–3 3 February 2017  Latvia 4 February 2018  Egypt
Rolf Christoffersen 1 0–2 0–3 0–5 4 May 1928  Hungary 15 May 1931  Poland
Viktor Durasovic 15 11–9 4–7 15–16 2 February 2014  Lithuania 27 November 2021  Ukraine
Nils Elvik 5 1–8 0–2 1–10 14 May 1965  South Africa 26 May 1968  Romania
Oscar Fagerstrøm 1 0–1 0–0 0–1 13 May 1931  Poland 15 May 1931  Poland
Ragnar Felix 1 0–1 0–0 0–1 8 February 1980  West Germany 10 February 1980  West Germany
Adrian Forberg Skogeng 1 0–1 0–0 0–1 9 July 2010  Monaco 11 July 2010  Monaco
Sjur-Lars Galtung-Hansen 3 0–3 0–2 0–5 4 May 1962  Poland 11 May 1969  Austria
Johan Haanes 10 5–14 1–9 6–23 7 May 1932  Monaco 11 May 1951  Egypt
Thorgny Haanes 1 0–2 0–1 0–3 19 May 1950  Sweden 21 May 1950  Sweden
Ragnar Hagen 3 0–4 0–2 0–6 5 May 1932  Monaco 20 August 1933  Yugoslavia
Anders Håseth 3 9–7 0–0 9–7 8 May 1987  Senegal 27 March 1994  Croatia
Thomas Haug 3 0–1 0–0 0–1 11 July 2003  Finland 13 July 2003  Finland
Per Hegna 17 12–19 3–6 15–25 4 May 1962  Poland 12 June 1983  Austria
Lukas Hellum Lilleengen 1 1–0 0–0 1–0 6 March 2020  Barbados 7 March 2020  Barbados
Nils-Erik Hesen 7 1–12 2–6 3–18 13 May 1949  Sweden 13 May 1956  Sweden
Thomas Heyerdahl 1 1–0 0–0 1–0 2 May 1997  Nigeria 4 May 1997  Nigeria
Lars Hjarrand 2 1–1 0–0 1–1 3 April 1998  Romania 2 May 1999  Turkey
Finn-Dag Jagge 12 1–11 2–8 3–19 6 May 1955  South Africa 15 April 1973  Ireland
Audun Jensen 5 2–3 2–1 4–4 9 May 1986  Nigeria 12 June 1988  Ireland
Fritz Jenssen 3 1–5 0–3 1–8 14 May 1936  Belgium 22 May 1938  Germany
Tony Jonsson 5 2–8 0–0 2–8 10 June 1983  Austria 11 May 1986  Nigeria
Helge Koll-Frafjord 18 5–12 4–7 9–19 30 April 1993  Finland 18 July 2004  Hungary
Sverre Lie 3 0–3 0–2 0–5 9 May 1951  Egypt 19 May 1953  Great Britain
Erik Melander 7 2–5 3–3 5–8 4 May 1967  France 20 May 1973  France
Thorvald Moe 7 2–6 3–4 5–10 29 April 1960  Netherlands 5 May 1974  Spain
Jan Munch-Soegaard 3 0–1 1–2 1–3 24 September 1976  Poland 10 February 1980  West Germany
Bjørn Naume 1 0–1 0–0 0–1 8 May 1981  Ireland 10 May 1981  Ireland
Jack Nielsen 1 0–7 0–5 0–7 10 May 1929  Hungary 15 May 1931  Poland
Rolf Pape 1 3–6 2–2 5–8 1 May 1953  Luxembourg 3 May 1959  South Africa
Bent-Ove Pedersen 1 14–6 8–7 22–13 8 May 1987  Senegal 18 July 1999  Morocco
Gisle Pedersen-Jentoft 1 0–1 0–1 0–2 7 May 1982  Yugoslavia 9 May 1982  Yugoslavia
Terje Persson 1 0–1 1–2 1–3 10 June 1983  Austria 17 June 1984  Austria
Frithjof Prydz 1 2–8 2–3 4–11 3 May 1968  Luxembourg 17 September 1979  Netherlands
Arne-Georg Raabe 1 0–1 1–0 1–1 15 June 1990  Morocco 5 May 1991  Bulgaria
Edvard Raastad 1 0–2 0–0 0–2 4 May 1967  France 6 May 1967  France
Thomas Randby 1 2–2 0–0 2–2 14 September 1979  Turkey 10 May 1981  Ireland
Philip Riise-Hansen 2 2–3 1–1 3–4 6 April 2007  Hungary 11 May 2008  Bosnia and Herzegovina
Sigurd Rinde 1 0–2 0–0 0–2 26 May 1939  Belgium 28 May 1939  Belgium
Anders Rolfsen 1 0–0 6–1 6–1 4 May 1990  Monaco 3 May 1992  Poland
Morten Ronneberg 5 2–5 1–3 3–8 7 May 1982  Yugoslavia 12 May 1985  Greece
Helge Rosjø 1 1–0 1–0 2–0 30 April 1999  Turkey 2 May 1999  Turkey
Jon-Erik Rustad 1 2–7 2–3 4–10 3 May 1968  Luxembourg 6 May 1973  Denmark
Casper Ruud 6 16–3 4–5 20–8 16 July 2015  Armenia 27 November 2021  Ukraine
Christian Ruud 12 24–15 7–8 31–23 5 May 1989  Luxembourg 30 April 2000  Israel
Gunnar Sjøwall 11 7–12 1–6 8–18 6 May 1955  South Africa 1 May 1966  West Germany
Frederik Sletting-Johnsen 6 2–2 1–4 3–6 6 April 2007  Hungary 11 May 2008  Bosnia and Herzegovina
Finn-Trygve Smith 4 0–6 1–1 1–7 5 May 1932  Monaco 5 August 1934  Hungary
Finn Søhol 8 9–5 0–2 9–7 1 May 1953  Luxembourg 3 May 1964  Portugal
Jan Staubo 4 2–6 0–2 2–8 16 May 1947  New Zealand 11 May 1951  Egypt
Øystein Steiro 3 3–0 0–0 3–0 14 May 2011  Andorra 17 July 2015  North Macedonia
Carl Sundberg 4 2–0 2–0 4–0 7 April 2006  Zimbabwe 3 May 2012  Malta
Frederick Sundsten 2 0–1 0–1 0–2 9 April 2004  Ukraine 18 July 2004  Hungary
Jan Svensen 1 0–1 0–2 0–3 7 May 1982  Yugoslavia 9 May 1982  Yugoslavia
Marius Tangen 1 0–1 0–0 0–1 4 March 2005  Ukraine 6 March 2005  Ukraine
Torleif Torkildsen 5 1–7 0–2 1–9 4 May 1928  Hungary 7 May 1932  Monaco
Erling Tveit 21 9–9 7–7 16–16 19 September 2003  Luxembourg 6 April 2004  Monaco
Erik Ulleberg 3 0–4 0–3 0–7 13 September 1974  Belgium 18 September 1977  Morocco

See also

External links

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