Roberto Bautista Agut and Pablo Carreno Busta are both focused on going one step better than in 2020, when they helped Team Spain reach the ATP Cup final.
Bautista Agut, who leads Spain this year in the absence of Rafael Nadal, fondly remembered the inaugural edition on Thursday, saying, “I think the ATP Cup of 2020 I think was one of the best tournaments I ever played.
“The organisation and the event was amazing. We had the chance to play the group in Perth, and then the final event here in Sydney, and Spain played very well. We reached the final. We lost in the deciding doubles, and it was a great experience.”
The 33-year-old, a nine-time ATP Tour titlist, is feeling confident and looking forward to the opportunity, starting against Chile on Saturday, before then playing Norway and Serbia in Group A.
“I think we have to be very focused in our three points,” Bautista Agut said. “Every point is 33 per cent. In my case, I feel good. I feel I [am] practising well, I did a great job at home. I think I can play a good ATP Cup. I think we have a very complete team. We are all good players, and the practise has been good.”
World No. 20 Carreno Busta, who made his ATP Cup singles debut last year, when he helped Spain advance to the semi-finals, believes strong team depth is essential for success at the 16-team event.
“In this competition there are three points, it’s very important to have good team, not just a good No. 1,” Carreno Busta said. “I think that in this case, Spain has a very good team. [A] good No. 1 [in] Roberto, but also No. 2, 3, 4, and 5 [players].
“We know the No. 2 player is very important. I have a lot of responsibility, because we know that all of the opponents have a Top 10 or similar as their No. 1 [player]. We need to win the first point to go up on the score.”
Albert Ramos-Vinolas, Alejandro Davidovich Fokina and Pedro Martinez complete Team Spain, with Martinez making his ATP Cup debut. The 24-year-old, who rose to a career-high No. 58 in the FedEx ATP Rankings last season, is looking forward to the experience.
“I’m very happy to join the Spanish team,” Martinez said. “I think we have a really strong team. Both players can beat anyone on the Tour. We also have a good chance in doubles. Let’s see how the groups are. I think we have a big chance to qualify, and I believe in the Spanish team because I think it’s very strong.”