France wins thrilling doubles match to keep their Davis Cup hopes alive - UBITENNIS
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France wins thrilling doubles match to keep their Davis Cup hopes alive

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Pierre Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut scored a vital 6-4 6-4 3-6 7-6 win for France over Croatia’s Ivan Dodig and Mate Pavic in a thrilling doubles match on Saturday in Lille after a 3-hour and 38 minute battle to keep French hopes alive after Borna Coric and Marin Cilic won the first two singles matches on Friday afternoon.

 

Mahut and Herbert, who became the third French team to win the Roland Garros doubles title in Paris last June and reached the final at last week’s ATP Finals in London, needed to win the doubles match and they kept the home team’s hopes alive by scoring a thrilling 6-4 6-4 3-6 7-6 (7-3) in front of 22910 spectators in the Stade Pierre Mauroy in Lille. With this win France closed the gap to 2-1 ahead of Sunday’s reverse singles matches.

Herbert and Mahut dropped their serve just twice from the nine break point chances they faced and converted three of their eleven break points.

Pavic and Dodig wasted three game points at 3-3 in the first set before dropping serve for the first time in the match in the seventh game. Herbert and Mahut held serve in the 10th game at love to close out the first set 6-4. Pavic and Dodig squandered a game point at 4-4 before Herbert and Mahut broke serve at 15 in the next game after Dodig made his second double fault. The French doubles team held serve at 30 to close out the second set 6-4.

Mahut and Herbert earned an early break in the first game of the third set. Dodig saved four break points at 0-2 down in the third set.

The home team built up a 3-1 lead, but Dodig and Pavic reeled off five consecutive games with two breaks of serve in the sixth and eighth games to win the third set 6-3 forcing the match to the fourth set.

Dodig and Pavic did not convert three break points in the first game of the fourth set. Pavic saved three match points to hold for 5-5, as he was serving at 4-5 to stay in the match. in the tie-break Mahut and Herbert earned an early mini-break with a forehand return at the start of the tie-break. They sealed the win with a double mini-break on the 10th point to clinch the tie-break 7-3 sending the match to the fourth singles rubber on Sunday.

“We tried to keep the team alive today. I think tonight we are going to have the smile at the hotel. We won this one but we still have two more matches to win. We want to win the Davis Cup and I think our player can do it tomorrow”, said Mahut.

France faces a daunting task on Sunday, as only one team in history managed to recover from a 0-2 deficit in the history of Davis Cup Finals. The only team who achieved this feat was Australia, who came back from 0-2 down to win the Davis Cup Trophy against the USA in 1939. If France manages the come-back feat, they would claim their 11th Davis Cup title.

Croatia is one win away from winning their second Davis Cup in history 13 years after their first triumph against Slovakia with a team featuring Ivan Ljubicic and Mario Ancic. World number 7 player Marin Cilic will face Jeremy Chardy in the first Sunday singles rubber. Cilic will be bidding to score his 30th Davis Cup win on Sunday.

Borna Coric will face Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the fifth rubber match, if Chardy manages to beat Cilic.

French captain Yannick Noah faces the tough decision, whether to give another chance to Chardy or try Lucas Pouille, who won the decisive fifth match last year against Belgium. Pouille won a title in Montpellier and reached two finals in Marseille and Dubai in the first part of the season, but he struggled in the second half.

 

 

Davis Cup

Russia And Canada Complete ATP Cup Semi-Final Line-Up

Russia and Canada will meet in the ATP Cup semi-finals on Saturday.

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Daniil Medvedev (@TENNIS - Twitter)

Russia and Canada booked their spots in the semi-finals of the ATP Cup on Thursday.

 

Russia completed their group stage campaign with a 2-1 victory over Italy in Group B.

The match was a winners take all clash with the Italians making the perfect start as Jannik Sinner defeated Roman Safiullin 7-6(8) 6-3.

However world number two Daniil Medvedev levelled the tie in a hard-fought victory over Wimbledon finalist Matteo Berrettini.

Medvedev needed 2 hours and 40 minutes to edge out Berrettini 6-2 6-7(5) 6-4 to put Russia level with Italy.

Then all four singles players returned for the doubles which the Russians won 5-7 6-4 10-5 in a tense contest.

This saw Russia book a place in the last four and after the match Medvedev spoke about the importance of his win over Berrettini, “The first set I was in control and it’s tricky because you think that things will continue to go your way but that’s not the case when you’re up against a Top 10 player,” Medvedev told the ATP Cup website.

“I made some bad decisions in the second set so I tried to learn from that in the third. I served well throughout the match and that helped me.”

Russia will now face Canada in the last four on Saturday after Denis Shapovalov and Felix Auger-Aliassime both secured singles wins over Germany.

Shapovalov edged out Struff in three sets to give Canada the lead and then Felix Auger-Aliassime scored a huge victory over Olympic champion Alexander Zverev 6-4 4-6 6-3.

This meant that Canada denied Great Britain a place in the semis after the Brits beat USA 2-1 earlier in the day. The other result saw Australia beat France 2-1.

Russia and Canada will meet in Sydney on Saturday while tomorrow Poland will face Spain.

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Davis Cup

Canada gets first win at ATP Cup after comeback victory over Great Britain

Felix Auger-Aliassime inspired Canada to victory against Great Britain at the ATP Cup.

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(@DerechayReves - Twitter)

Team Canada got its first win of the tournament when they beat Team Great Britain 2-1 and it all came down to the doubles match.

 

Evans eases by Shapovalov

Dan Evans got the first point of the tie as he had no issues getting by Denis Shapovalov beating him in straight sets 6-4, 6-4 in one hour and 23 minutes serving four aces and winning 88% of his first-serve points.

The first six games of the opening set stayed on serve and it was the Brit who earned the first breakpoint of the match and broke the Canadian and that one break of serve proved crucial as he took the first set,

Evans carried the momentum into the second set and it looked like the Canadian was still easing his way into his game and he broke him early in the set to take an early 2-1 lead.

Again that one break of serve was all the Brit needed to serve out the set and the match and give the first point to Team Great Britan.

Auger Aliassime responds for Canada

Felix Auger Aliassime responded for Canada beating Cameron Norrie in straight sets 7-6 (4), 6-3 in two hours serving eight aces, and winning 85% of his points on his first serve.

The first set was a battle as these two players know each other well and the last time they met was a three-set marathon match in Vienna with the Canadian getting the win.

The Montreal native got the first chance to break at 4-3 and took it for a 5-3 lead and a chance to serve out the first set. When serving for it the Canadian got tight and Norrie made him pay by breaking him right back.

The first set was decided by a tiebreaker and the world number 11 won the first six points of the breaker and took the first set.

Winning the first set gave the Canadian the momentum he needed and he broke the Britt early in the second set in the second game and that one break of serve was enough for him to serve out the match.

This meant the doubles match was going to decide the winner of the tie.

Canada wins deciding doubles

With the tie level at 1-1, the winner was decided by the third and final doubles match and it was Auger Aliassime and Shapovalov beating the British duo of Jamie Murray and Joe Salsbury.

A 6-4, 6-1 win in one hour and 10 minutes with the Canadians serving seven aces and winning 83% of their points off the first served ensured that all teams in the group now have a record of 1-1.

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Davis Cup

Davis Cup Champions Russia Banned From Hosting Ties In 2022

The newly crowned champions will not be allowed the opportunity to potentially play some of their matches next year at home due to a ruling by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

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MADRID, SPAIN - DECEMBER 05: Davis Cup by Rakuten Madrid Finals 2021 at Madrid Arena on December 05, 2021 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos / Quality Sport Images / Kosmos Tennis)

The bidding process for host cities of the 2022 Davis Cup Finals will get underway in the coming weeks but Russia will not be allowed to take part.

 

Last week Daniil Medvedev led his country to victory over Croatia in the final to give Russia, who were playing under the name of the Russian Tennis Federation (RTF), only their third title in the prestigious team event which was founded back in 1900. In this year’s finals, they also beat Germany, Sweden, Ecuador and Spain en route to the title.

Next year’s tournament is once again set to be a first in the Davis Cup history after organisers confirmed that the finals will be staged across a total of five cities. During a recent press conference, the International Tennis Federation and investment company Kosmos say they plan to stage each of the four groups in separate cities and a fifth city hosting the knockout stages. The name of those hosts has not been announced but it is widely speculated that the Middle East may hold the knockout stages. The number of teams in the finals will be cut from 18 to 16.

However, Russia will not be allowed to stage a tie in 2022 but will be free to do so from the following year. This is because the country is currently banned from international competition for doping violations. An extensive investigation discovered multiple incidents of illegal doping practices by Russian officials at various Olympic Games but tennis have never been implicated in the scandal. As a result the World Anti-Doping Agency, which the International Tennis Federation is a member of, handed Russia a ban. This is why Medvedev and his team played under their federation name and not their country.

The ITF has confirmed to UbiTennis that the ban is in force until December 16th 2022 which is after the 2022 Finals.

“The ban remains in place for two years and that includes Russia hosting any WADA listed world competitions or world cup tournaments/competition events, and when competing outside of Russia the use of their national name, insignia, emblems and anthem are banned throughout this same period,” an ITF spokesperson told UbiTennis.

Kosmos, who are the main financial driving force behind the Davis Cup, had previously said they hope to select cities on a contract basis lasting ‘three to five years.’ However, they also want to maintain that every host city belongs to a country playing in the Finals which complicates matters somewhat. It is possible that Italy could be selected as a host for a three-year period but if they fail to qualify in one of those years, they may lose their hosting rights.

“It can happen that you have an agreement with a city or country, then the home team is not classified (qualified). That’s why we need to have multi-agreements, plus backup options, for fixing the possibility of not being classified,” Kosmos president Enrique Rojas recently told reporters.

The process for selecting the host cities will begin in January with interested candidates having six weeks to present their proposals. A final decision is then expected to be made round mid-Match.

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