Good news for Gavrilova, yet not for Bedene

Published by AAP/Reuters

Daria Gavrilova in action at Australian Open 2016; Getty Images

World No.34 Daria Gavrilova has won her appeal to play in the Fed Cup for Australia.

Gavrilova received the welcome news at an International Tennis Federation (ITF) hearing in Moldova on Wednesday.

Yet the news was not so good for British No.2 Aljaz Bedene, who lost his appeal against a decision to stop him playing for his adopted country in the Davis Cup.

The 26-year-old was born in Slovenia and represented them in three Davis Cup ties before becoming a British citizen last March.

Gavrilova, a Russian-born player who reached the fourth round of this year’s Australian Open, successfully appealed against tightened ITF rules that prevented her from representing Australia despite having received her citizenship.

The new rule requires players to be citizens for at least two years before representing their countries in Davis or Fed Cup.

Previously, players could play for their countries upon becoming citizens if they had not represented another nation in the previous three years.

The new ruling prevented Gavrilova from featuring in the tie against Slovakia in Bratislava last month, but she successfully argued that she should be permitted to play as she’d already qualified for Australia when the new rulings were introduced last year.

“The ITF board considered all written and oral submissions made by Tennis Australia, Daria Gavrilova, the Russian Tennis Federation and the original decision maker, the Fed Cup Committee,” the ITF said in a statement on its website.

“In all the circumstances, the board determined that an exception should be made pursuant to Article 31(b) of the ITF Fed Cup Regulations.”

Gavrilova is now eligible to represent Australia in the Fed Cup against the US in Brisbane next month.

For Bedene, he remains subject to an ITF rule – introduced in 2015 – that sees players prevented from playing for a second country in the most prestigious team competition in men’s tennis.

“Of course I am very sad with today’s result and that it has not gone the way I had hoped,” world No. 57 Bedene said.

“I will have to assess my situation now before I decide on what steps to take next.”

Britain, led by Andy Murray, won the Davis Cup last year for the first time since 1936.

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