Sport : Tennis

Berdych sends Czechs through

4th February 2013, 08:06am

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Berdych: Won crucial clash

Berdych: Won crucial clash

A review of Sunday's action in the Davis Cup.

Tomas Berdych overcame the exertions of Saturday's longest ever Davis Cup match to book Czech Republic's place in the quarter-finals against Switzerland.

Berdych ensured the champions' passage with a 6-3 6-4 3-6 7-6 (7/5) victory over the luckless Stanislas Wawrinka, who was also involved in that epic seven-hour doubles contest.

Wawrinka, who lost a five-hour battle to Novak Djokovic at the Australian Open last month, had given Switzerland a 1-0 lead in the tie on Friday but found himself on the wrong end of yet more punishment in Geneva.

He and Marco Chiudinelli were beaten 6-4 5-7 6-4 6-7 (3/7) 24-22 by Berdych and Lukas Rosol in a record-breaking match that lasted seven hours and one minute.

That surpassed the previous longest Davis Cup match of six hours and 22 minutes played by John McEnroe and Mats Wilander in 1982 before tie-breakers had been introduced.

Berdych was comparatively untroubled as he took three hours and 15 minutes to secure an unassailable 3-1 lead and book a last-eight meeting with Kazakhstan in April.

Henri Laaksonen won the dead-rubber reverse singles 0-6 6-3 6-1 against Jiri Vesely to at least give the home fans some cheer.

Kazakhstan, who knocked Czech Republic out in the first round two years ago, booked their place after securing a 3-1 win over Austria.

Andrey Golubev defied a gap of almost 150 places in the world rankings to upset Jurgen Melzer 4-6 6-3 6-4 6-2.

Argentina will host France in the next round after they both completed 5-0 whitewashes.

In Buenos Aires, Juan Monaco and Carlos Berlocq were both straight-sets winners to brush aside Germany.

Monaco beat Tobias Kamke 6-4 7-6 (7/2) before Berlocq completed the rout 6-2 6-4 over Christopher Kas.

France were similarly untroubled against Israel as Michael Llodra beat Noam Okum 6-3 7-6 (7/5) before Richard Gasquet's 6-4 6-3 win over Amir Weintraub.

Favourites Serbia lost both of Sunday's dead reverse singles rubbers against Belgium after world number one Djokovic was rested with his nation already through.

In Djokovic's absence, David Goffin beat Boris Pashanski 6-4 2-6 6-2 while Steve Darcis defeated Nenad Zimonjic 6-2 6-2.

Next up for the Serbs will be the USA, who held off Brazil's fightback to progress 3-2.

The US led 2-0 after Friday's singles but the visitors won Saturday's doubles and drew level in the tie when Thomaz Bellucci claimed a five-set victory over John Isner in Sunday's first match.

When Thiago Alves took the first set from Sam Querrey a big upset looked on the cards in Jacksonville, but Querrey fought back to win in four sets and book the US a home tie against Serbia in April.

Last year's finalists Spain paid for the absence of their star names, including Rafael Nadal, as they were bundled out by Canada.

Rising star Milos Raonic fired the north Americans into an unassailable 3-1 lead after he beat Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 6-3 6-4 6-2.

Nadal was unavailable, along with the likes of David Ferrer, as he continues his comeback after nine months out with a knee injury and, more recently, a stomach virus.

Canada will meet Italy in the next round after the latter completed a 3-2 win over Croatia.

Fabio Fognini claimed the decisive tie when he recovered from losing the first set to beat Ivan Dodig 4-6 6-4 6-4 6-4.

Marin Cilic had earlier levelled matters with a 6-3 6-3 7-5 success over Andreas Seppi.


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