Melbourne - Retiring veteran Lleyton Hewitt
was on Tuesday appointed Australia's new Davis Cup captain, succeeding interim
skipper Wally Masur.
The 34-year-old, who is calling it quits
after his 20th consecutive Australian Open in January, has been positioned for
the role since Pat Rafter stepped down earlier this year.
Masur agreed to fill in until Hewitt was
He follows in the footsteps of other
Australian tennis greats to hold the coveted role, including Neale Fraser, John
Newcombe and Rafter, and becomes the youngest skipper since World War II.
"I've been fortunate enough to work
under some of the greatest Davis Cup captains in history," Hewitt said at
"For me, it's about instilling my
experience in these younger guys."
A veteran of 40 ties over a record 17
years' service, Hewitt will lead young guns including Bernard Tomic, Nick
Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis.
Rafter, now Tennis Australia's director of
player performance, said Hewitt's biggest asset was his passion.
"That has never waned for him
throughout his whole career and I don't think it's going to wane now,"
Hewitt's first tie in charge will be next
March when Australia host the USA in a first-round fixture.
Australia reached the semi-finals this year,
with Hewitt playing, only to be knocked out the Andy Murray-led Great Britain.