Defending champions Team Europe and a fired-up Team World will go head-to-head for the third time when Laver Cup 2019 gets underway on Friday at Palexpo, Geneva.

The Laver Cup has black courts

Many of the top tournaments use a color scheme. For the Laver, it’s black. According to the New York Times, the Laver Cup courts could not be any more black, organizers said. They know because they have tested all shades of black to produce the darkest black with the highest impact that is immediately identifiable to fans.

The signature black courts are the result of two years of research.

For the court itself, the players' well-being, the ball impact, the fans and televisions to make it 'watchable'. Technically, there is a bit of sand mixed in with the paint, meaning the speed of the court will be a bit slower.

Why we call it Laver Cup

Rod Laver is an Australian former Tennis player. He was the No.1 ranked professional from 1964 to 1970, spanning four years before and three years after the start of the Open Era in 1968. Laver, who turned 81 in August, is the only player ever to have won two Grand Slams — the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and U.S. Championship in the same calendar year — which he did in 1962 as an amateur and then again in 1969. Four other players, Don Budge, Maureen Connolly Brinker, Margaret Smith Court and Steffi Graf, have done it once.

Rod Laver won a record 200 tournaments. When Laver’s name is mentioned, two descriptions immediately follow: Greatest player in history and 'The Rocket', a mix of speed and agility, he had a fiery competitive spirit and a developed game that had no weaknesses. The Laver Cup is a way to pay tribute to him.

Roger Federer insisted on naming the team competition that he and his management group founded after Laver.

Tournament history

The Laver Cup is an international indoor hard court men's tennis tournament between two teams of six players: Team Europe and Team World like the Ryder Cup in golf. There are twelve matches played over three days (nine singles and three doubles).

The first edition was held in Prague from 22–24 September 2017, at the O2 Arena.

Team Europe defeated Team World 15–9. The second was played in Chicago from 21–23 September 2018, at the United Center. Team Europe defeated Team World 13–8.

Team World is not that strong but they will undoubtedly give their best to topple the better-ranked rivals and lift the trophy for the first time.

Team Europe is composed of Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Dominic Thiem, Alexander Zverev, Fabio Fognini and Stefanos Tsitsipas (coach: Björn Borg).

Team World is composed of John Isner, Milos Raonic, Nick Kyrgios, Taylor Fritz, Denis Shapovalov and Jack Sock (coach: John McEnroe).

Team Europe took a 3-1 lead over Team World on the first day of the Laver Cup after winning two of three singles matches and the doubles contest.

Dominic Thiem and Stefanos Tsitsipas won their respective singles matches before Roger Federer and Alexander Zverev teamed up in the doubles, saving a whopping 15 of 16 breakpoints to beat Jack Sock and Denis Shapovalov 6-3 7-5.