Julien Benneteau will delay his retirement to play for France in the Davis Cup Final and is re-working his schedule to stay in shape. The 36-year-old played his final singles match at the US Open last month but teamed up with Nicolas Mahut in the doubles to seal the point that ensured France had an unassailable 3-0 lead in the semi-final with Spain last weekend.
France are now planning to host Croatia in November as the holders look to retain their Davis Cup title, but Benneteau will continue to play doubles on tour to retain his sharpness.
“It’s something magical,” he said.
“A very emotional moment was lived and now I hope we’ll be all ready for the final. There is something even bigger to go for.”
France captain Yannick Noah picked Benneteau to replace injured Pierre-Hugues Herbert for the semi-final and he did not disappoint as the pairing thrashed Marcel Granollers and Feliciano Lopez 6-0, 6-4, 7-6.
He plans to join Lucas Pouille at the ATP tournament in Vienna next month after asking for a wildcard and the duo should also team up at Bercy in the lead-up to the final itself.
He added: “I always said that what could make me prolong my career is the team of France, if ever they had to appeal to me to compensate for an injury. For me, it was inconceivable to give up and not to honour this selection.”