Carlos Moya is stepping down as Spain's Davis Cup captain, citing the challenge of getting the top players to play.

Spain, lacking seven of its top 10 players for a playoff against Brazil, including injured world No. 2 Rafael Nadal, was relegated from the World Group for the first time in 18 years.

Moya told El Pais that was not specifically the reason why he was leaving. "The decision was not reached because of the defeat to Brazil. It was at the US Open," he said.

The former French Open champion described two weeks of asking players to play but finding that most were not willing. Moya, who had already been reluctant to be away from his family, decided the position was not for him.

"Everything was complicated with the injury to Rafa. I went with an idea to New York, but I did not think that the other Spanish in the top 100 were going to say injury, or calendar, lack of motivation," Moya said. "I understand, because I was a player, but I've seen how difficult it is to assemble the structure for a Davis Cup team."

But he did not criticize specific players, saying, "If the problem was that one or two say no, it is those players. If eight or nine players say no, it's something about the competition, the system."

Following Moya's decision, the Spanish tennis federation is expected to begin searching for a replacement.