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"Lack of Patriotism Leads to Defeat"

I know most people don't care, or even know about, the Davis Cup quarterfinal results this weekend. What? Oh, right, right...the Davis Cup is a tennis tournament where each country plays as a team, selecting two singles players and a doubles team to participate. Each country plays in a bracket, and the winners advance like in a regular tournament.

Now, other countries really get into the Davis Cup. In fact, when I saw the Davis Cup finals in Fort Worth, between the U.S. and Switzerland, the Swiss were making more noise than the U.S! It was sad to watch. The Swiss brought horns, musical instruments, and plenty of banners. By the end of the weekend, a few hundred U.S. spectators had brought flags to wave.

The matches against Switzerland were bearable because Andre Agassi, John MacEnroe, Jim Courier, and Pete Sampras actually *played* and won the Davis Cup for the States.

But this weekend, when the States played the Czech Republic, none of the above players (the best in the world) were there. Todd Martin, Patrick Galbreath, Malivai Washington, and the rest of the team had to step up and fill the missing slots. Where were our top players? Are they too good to play for their own country?

I don't know the specific reasons each of the players decided not to play in the Davis Cup. But come on, guys, you've pulled this disappearing act before. And each time the top players aren't there, we struggle or lose a chance at winning the Davis Cup, something other countries would LOVE to have.

Thanks to the Americans who DID play, and fought very hard against the Czechs. I have a lot more respect for you guys than I do for the top players in the world who somehow didn't think the Davis Cup was important enough to attend.

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