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Spain, Serbia, Argentina Take 2-0 Leads

Soeda© Getty ImagesJapan's Go Soeda came back from two sets down for the first time in his career.

A round-up of the eight Davis Cup by BNP Paribas World Group first-round ties on Friday.

Clay, Indoors - Oviedo, Spain

Nicolas Almagro defeated Andrey Golubev 6-3, 4-6, 6-1, 6-1 to put defending champion Spain ahead of Kazakhstan 2-0. Almagro won 48 per cent of his return points, breaking Golubev eight times to claim the two hour and 23 minute victory.

Juan Carlos Ferrero battled past Mikhail Kukushkin 6-1, 4-6, 7-6(2), 4-6, 6-4 in the opening rubber. Ferrero was down a break in the fifth set, before winning four of the final five games to clinch the win in four hours and 28 minutes. "These kind of matches are very tough," Ferrero said. "Since the beginning, I was playing good tennis. But I had to fight until the end. It was very close the entire match."

Watch Live Ties and Match Highlights | Live Scores  

Hard, Indoor - Nis, Serbia

Viktor Troikci put Serbia ahead of Sweden 2-0 following his 6-4, 6-3, 5-7, 6-3 win against Michael Ryderstedt in just over two and a half hours. Troicki won 87 per cent of his first serve points, firing 23 aces.

In the opening rubber, World No. 9 Janko Tipsarevic made light work of Swede Filip Prpic in a 6-3, 6-3, 6-4 victory at a capacity Cair Hall, clinching his fourth match point after two hours and six minutes of play.

Tipsarevic and Nenad Zimonjic will aim to clinch the tie when they square off against Johan Brunstrom and Robert Lindstedt on Saturday.

Bourbon Beans Dome, Hyogo, Japan

Go Soeda handed Japan, back in the World Group for the first time since 1985, the lead in its tie against Croatia. Soeda fought back from two sets down for the first time in his career to beat Ivan Dodig 6-7(3), 3-6, 6-4, 6-3, 7-5 in four hours and five minutes. They had previously met at the Aircel Chennai Open in the first week of the 2012 ATP World Tour season.

Ivo Karlovic hit back for 2005 champion Croatia when he struck 18 aces and 40 winners past Kei Nishikori, currently No. 20 in the South African Airways ATP Rankings, for a 6-4, 6-4, 6-3 win in one hour and 49 minutes.

Tatsuma Ito and Yuichi Sugita will face Karlovic and Lovro Zovko in Saturday's doubles rubber, although nominations may be changed one hour before play starts. Japan is bidding to win its first tie at this level since 1921, when the nation reached the final on its competition debut.

Read 'Counting On Kei' & 'Determined Dodig' In DEUCE

Clay, Indoor - Bamberg, Germany

After dropping the first set, David Nalbandian took command of his rubber against Florian Mayer, defeating the World No. 21 2-6, 6-0, 6-1, 7-6(5) to extend Argentina's lead over Germany to a 2-0 advantage.

Earlier, Juan Monaco recorded his sixth singles win in 13 rubbers for Argentina when he beat Germany's Philipp Petzschner 6-3, 6-3, 6-3 in two hours and three minutes. Monaco committed just 15 unforced errors to hand the 2011 finalist an early lead.

Petzschner is due to team with Tommy Haas in Saturday's doubles rubber against Eduardo Schwank and Juan Ignacio Chela.

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Davis Cup, Davis Cup First Round

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