Nate Chura is senior tennis pro at the Heights Casino in Brooklyn and covers the U.S. Open for WNYC.
The news took everyone by surprise this morning at the National Tennis Center, site of the U.S. Open. Shortly after 10:30 a.m., U.S. Davis Cup Captain Patrick McEnroe announced he will be stepping down as captain of the American squad after the World Group Play-Offs against Colombia later this month in Bogota.
McEnroe—younger brother of Hall of Famer John McEnroe—is the longest-tenured captain in U.S. Davis Cup history. He coached the U.S. team to victory for the first time in 12 years in 2007. The following year, McEnroe was named general manager of USTA Player Development, a position he is taking very seriously.
“It is with a heavy heart that I am resigning as Davis Cup captain, but it is a decision I felt was best for the team and myself right now,” McEnroe said. “Davis Cup is a significant time commitment and this decision will allow me to focus more energy on my family and to the USTA Player Development program.”
“Patrick is the one the finest and most decorated captains in U.S. Davis Cup history,“ said Lucy S. Garvin, Chairman of the Board and President, USTA. “He leaves an indelible mark on the Davis Cup, and has always handled his captaincy with class and distinction. Patrick is and will remain a tremendous asset to U.S. tennis as he continues to lead our player development efforts.”
McEnroe’s final team for the showdown in Bogota will include Mardy Fish, Sam Querrey, John Isner and 18-year-old Ryan Harrison. The win is crucial if the U.S. is to remain in the exclusive world group competition.