Ankita (ranked 174) and Karman Kaur Thandi (ranked 621), who takes on host number one player Anastasija Sevastova (ranked 47), both said they are ready for a good fight.
Ankita played against Sevastova way back in 2015 at home in Ahmedabad, losing an ITF final to her. Their journeys have been contrasting since then with Sevastova getting into top-50 with a crushing backhand.
She even beat Serena Williams when Latvia played against US in 2020 Fed Cup Qualifiers.
"We mostly play on hard courts, so I am ready and excited for it. I give my best when I represent my country, I am more than ready," Ankita said at a virtual press conference.
Karman, who is making a comeback after an injury lay-off, said she is physically prepared for the big challenge.
"Fast or slow, it does not matter, both Ankita and I prefer hard courts. It's a good opportunity for us," she said.
Asked why he chose Karman over higher-ranked Rutuja Bhosale (419), captain Vishal Uppal said he has gone by his "gut feeling".
"All my five players have worked hard. I felt Karman can give us some extra on day one. I have gone with my gut," he said.
Sevastova said she knows Ankita well but watched a few Youtube videos of Karman to get an idea about her game.
"I watched for fun," she said jokingly.
"I watched to know what are her weapons or weakness. It's one thing to watch a video and different in real life. You know more when you are on court."
She played on clay court recently but said switching to hard court won't be an issue. She admitted that the surface would suit the Indians more.
Uppal felt the absence of crowd will work in India's favour.
"We have got to this stage (Play-offs) for the first time. The good thing is, there won't be 5-7 thousand fans screaming at us but at the same time it takes the fun away. Ranking go out of window in Bille Jean King Cup."
Friday: 1) Ankita Raina vs Jelena Ostapenko. 2) Karman Kaur Thandi vs Anastasija Sevastova.
Saturday: 3) Ankita Raina vs Anastasija Sevastova.
4) Karman Thandi vs Jelena Ostapenko. 5) Sania Mirza/Ankita Raina vs Diana Marcinkevica/Daniela Vismane.
Matches to start at 3:30pm on Friday and 11:30 am on Saturday.
Matches to be telecast live on Eurosport.
(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.
As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.
Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.