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Ultimate guide to Australia v USA Davis Cup World Group first round tie in Melbourne

The Davis Cup’s two most decorated nations meet for the 46th time in an intriguing beginning to legendary Lleyton Hewitt’s tenure as Australian captain.

Recently-retired Hewitt steps into the role looking to continue the 28-time champions’ remergence as a World Group force, having inspired the team to the 2015 semi-finals in his final season as a player. Led by rising stars Bernard Tomic and Nick Kyrgios, Australia is tipped to go deep into the draw again but faces a tricky first-up assignment in Melbourne against the Jim Courier-captained United States, 32-time champions also in a rebuilding phase. Here’s everything you need to know ahead of the tie, starting on Friday in Melbourne.

Australia v United States World Group, 1st round Best-of-five tie on grass court March 4-6, Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club, Melbourne Start of play: (all times AEDT): Friday 11am, Saturday Midday, Sunday 11am (draw held Thursday at 10am) The history Davis Cup titles: Australia 28, USA 32 Head to head record: 45 ties — Australia 20, USA 25 Head to head on grass: Australia 17, USA 19 Last meeting: Australia bt USA 4-1, World Group quarter-final, Chestnut Hill (hard court), 1999 Australia and the US have have met in twice World Group finals. In 1990, Andre Agassi and Michael Chang fired the Americans to a 3-2 win over an Australian team featuring Pat Cash, Darren Cahill and Richard Fromberg in St Petersburg, Florida. Australia beat the US 5-0 in the 1973 decider using only two players — and pretty handy ones at that — in Rod Laver and John Newcombe.

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