France's Davis Cup semi with Spain to be played on hard court in Lille

Paris (AFP) –


The Davis Cup semi-final between holders France and Spain in September will be played on an indoor hard court at Lille's Stade Pierre-Mauroy, the French tennis federation announced on Friday.

After the 2014 final loss to Switzerland and last year's victories over Serbia and Belgium in the last four and final respectively, it will be the fourth time that Lille's football stadium has been used by the Davis Cup side.

"In accordance with the choice of France captain Yannick Noah, the matches will be held on hard courts with the roof closed," the FFT said in a statement.

The decision to play on a hard court appears to be an attempt to minimise the threat of Spain's clay-court specialists, including world number one Rafael Nadal, who played a starring role in his country's quarter-final win over Germany last month.

The tie will take place from September 14-16, as France look to become the first team to successfully defend the title since the Czech Republic in 2013.