ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- Junior Samir Iftikhar has been nominated to play on Pakistan's 2014 Davis Cup team as announced by the International Tennis Federation on Wednesday, March 26. This will be Iftikhar's second career Davis Cup appearance.
Iftikhar is heading to Manila, Philippines to represent his home country and the University of New Mexico in one of the largest and most elite international men's tennis competitions. Pakistan will kick off the Davis Cup with a third-round match against the Philippines on April 4. Pakistan is currently ranked No. 55 out of the 131 nations competing.
"It is a great honor to be able to play for your country in your sport," New Mexico men's tennis head coach Alan Dils said. "It's similar to being asked to play on the US National Soccer team. Having players that are top competitors in their own country shows the strength of our Lobo team."
Since becoming a Lobo in 2011, Iftikhar has made plenty of noise on a national level, but the Davis cup gives him the chance to showcase his skills overseas. Iftikhar's national honors include a 2013 top fifty ITA pre-season ranking, several in-season rankings, two Mountain West Scholar Athlete awards, and an ITA Scholar Athlete award.
Before coming to UNM, Iftikhar competed on Pakistan's 2011 Davis Cup team where he dropped a 6-1, 6-4 match to China's Jonathan Chu in the first match that Pakistan played (third round). Pakistan has never won a Davis Cup championship.
"Sam will be representing Pakistan and the University of New Mexico on a world stage," Dils said.
Iftikhar is currently 10-4 (and 6 unfinished matches) in singles play this season at UNM. He will miss the Lobos' match conference match against the University of Nevada-Las Vegas on April 6.
If Pakistan advances at the Davis Cup, the next match will not be played until Sept. 12, 2014.
For more information on the 2014 Davis Cup, head to www.daviscup.com.