DAVIS CUP FIRST ROUND 2014
Federer, Wawrinka Give Switzerland Advantage; Defending Champion Level
by ATP Staff|
ATPWorldTour.com provides a round-up of Friday’s action in Davis Cup World Group first round ties.
SERBIA 0, SWITZERLAND 2
Spens Sport Centre, Novi Sad, Serbia
Roger Federer, the 17-time Grand Slam champion, who was a late inclusion for Switzerland this week, helped the visiting nation to a 1-0 lead over the 2010 Davis Cup titlist with a 6-4, 7-5, 6-2 win against Ilija Bozoljac in one hour and 42 minutes. Federer, now 33-7 overall in singles rubbers, fought back from a break down in the second set.
“I struggled to read Ilija’s serve early on although I wasn’t really surprised because I played against him not that long ago so I knew that he has a big serve," Federer told reporters. “In the second set I was just glad to take advantage and fight back. The most important thing is that I won the match in straight sets.”
Stanislas Wawrinka, currently at a career-high No. 3 in the Emirates ATP Rankings after he captured the Australian Open title on Sunday, overcame Dusan Lajovic 6-4, 4-6, 6-1, 7-6(7), saving two set points in the fourth set tie-break. "It was a tough match and it wasn't easy for me to come here after the last few weeks," said Wawrinka. Switzerland’s best Davis Cup result was a 1992 final run (l. to United States).
CZECH REPUBLIC 1, THE NETHERLANDS 1
Cez Arena, Ostrava, Czech Republic
World No. 7 Tomas Berdych dropped just three of his first service points against Dutchman Igor Sijsling in a 6-3, 6-3, 6-0 victory that earned two-time defending champion Czech Republic its first point of the tie. Robin Haase, who competed for The Netherlands for the first time in 2006, scored a 3-6, 6-4, 6-7(4), 6-2, 6-1 victory over Czech Radek Stepanek in three hours and 39 minutes. Haase saved 15 break points and hit 14 aces.
“I found the rhythm really well and the strategy and the tactics that I set before the game was working pretty well, and really I was profiting from that since the first points until the end," said Berdych.
The Czech Republic, contesting its 200th Davis Cup tie, is the two-time defending champion. The nation has won 10 straight ties. The Netherlands is attempting to reach the quarter-finals for the first time since 2005.
JAPAN 1, CANADA 1
Ariake Coliseum, Tokyo, Japan
World No. 18 Kei Nishikori earned Japan the opening rubber with a 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 win over Peter Polansky, before Canada’s Frank Dancevic levelled the tie with 16 aces in a 6-4, 7-6(2,) 6-1 win over Go Soeda, who committed 39 unforced errors. Japan’s Yuichi Sugita and Yasutaka Uchiyama will play Canada’s Daniel Nestor and Vasek Pospisil in Saturday's doubles. World No. 11 Milos Raonic withdrew from the tie on Thursday, with a foot injury.
KAZAKHSTAN 2, BELGIUM 0
National Tennis Centre, Astana, Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan, competing in the World Group for the fourth straight year, is in control against Belgium. Andrey Golubev saved five match points and hit 104 winners to complete a 7-6(9), 3-6, 4-6, 6-2, 12-10 victory over Belgian David Goffin in four hours and 38 minutes. In the tie opener, Mikhail Kukushkin recorded a 6-4, 6-7(3), 6-2, 6-3 victory over Ruben Bemelmans. The winning nation plays either Serbia or Switzerland in the quarter-finals