Hong Kong will face a tough battle staying in the Davis Cup Asia/Oceania Zone Group Two, non-playing captain Derek Ling Hay-ming said after learning they will have to travel to play Sri Lanka on clay in July for their relegation play-off. 'We will be up against the weather, an alien surface and opponents who are playing really well,' Ling said yesterday. 'Sri Lanka almost defeated New Zealand, who had three players in the top 300 in the world, which shows how competitive they will be.' Sri Lanka took their first-round tie against the Kiwis in Colombo into the last rubber before losing 3-2 last weekend. They will now host Hong Kong, who lost to Pakistan 3-1 at Victoria Park - the dead rubber being called off because of rain - from July 9 to 11 in Colombo. The clay surface will pose the biggest challenge to Hong Kong, who were last relegated to Group Three in 2004. 'We don't have even one clay court in Hong Kong and this will hamper our preparations badly,' Ling said. 'We will have to look at going overseas before the tie to prepare, but this will present us with another problem - the players getting time off work. 'The weather in Colombo in July is also bound to be really hot. Put these two factors together and we will have a tough job on our hands. 'And even though Sri Lanka have just moved up into Group Two, we cannot take them lightly considering how well they are playing.' Ling is hopeful he will have his best players available after Wayne Wong Wing-luen, Brian Hung Lap-hei and Martin Sayer missed last weekend's tie against Pakistan. 'Wayne and Brian are working and I don't know if they will be able to commit themselves to training. I hope they can find time off,' Ling said. Sayer is studying overseas, but is nursing a wrist injury. It is hoped he will be fit and available in July.