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The Laver Cup takes place every year between 6 players from Europe (plus a substitute) and 6 from the rest of the World (plus a substitute).

They play three singles and a double every day for three consecutive days, however, I do not understand how matches are selected since clearly it is not the case that each player plays everybody else on the other team.

The official site only says: Each player competes in at least one singles match during the first two days, No player can play singles more than twice during the three days. At least four of the six players must play doubles. No doubles combination is played more than once, unless for the Decider on Day 3, if points are 12:12.

But some players play once, some twice, some three times and some 4 times (2 singles and 2 doubles). How is that decided? By the captains or is there some rule? The site adds: Match-ups are determined through the exchange of line-up cards by the captains., so do they decide the players separately and then see how they match up (i.e. Captain 1 says, e.g., today Federer will play game 1, Nadal game 2, Thiem game 3, while captain 2 says: Del Potro will play game 1, Isner game 2 and Querrey game 3, so the matches are Federer-Del Potro, Nadal-Isner, Thiem-Querrey)?

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Searching through several web sites, I have not found anything that explicitly states how match ups are set. However, it seems the captain of each team picks the player(s) for each match "blindly" - without regard to ranking or foreknowledge of which player will be their opponent.

Supporting this, we have a few facts. Firstly, the "how it works" page on the event's web site states:

Captain’s Role
The captains are responsible for selecting the three captain’s picks as well as the players for singles and doubles matches.

From the same page, but closer to the top:

Friday’s line-up is announced on Thursday afternoon.
Saturday’s line-up is announced an hour after play ends on Friday night.
Sunday’s line-up is announced an hour after play ends on Saturday night.
Match-ups are determined through the exchange of line-up cards by the captains.

A line up card would simply state something like:

  • Match 1: Player A
  • Match 2: Player B
  • Match 3: Player C
  • Match 4: Players D & E

This implies that each captain chooses the players to play in each match without knowing who a given player will play against.

Also, blind match ups are how golf's Ryder Cup operates. Given that the Laver Cup is somewhat modeled off the Ryder Cup, it seems likely that the Laver Cup would copy this method of matching up opponents.

  • This does not answer the question. Not every player plays every other player, so who decides who plays whom? The captains may choose the players, but how are the combinations picked? – user Aug 5 at 18:16
  • @user: I have updated the answer. – GreenMatt Aug 5 at 19:04
  • +1 -so, it basically works similarly to my last statement in my question? – user Aug 6 at 21:10
  • @user: Yes, that seems to be how it works. – GreenMatt Aug 6 at 22:41
  • Thank you, especially for the comments about the Ryder Cup that I had no idea how it worked – user Aug 8 at 14:34

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