- 06 Jan 2020
Novak Djokovic inspired a comeback for Serbia as they defeated France 2-1 to seal a place in the ATP Cup quarter-finals.
Djokovic’s compatriot Dusan Lajovic lost the opening singles rubber in Brisbane, but the world number two ensured Serbia will progress from Group A.
Motivated and frustrated by a passionate crowd in Serbia’s opening tie with South Africa, Djokovic thrived in front of passionate support and made light work of Gael Monfils to level matters, dispatching him 6-3 6-2 to improve his record in their head to head to 16-0.
He and Viktor Troicki then required a match tie-break to see off Nicolas Mahut and Edouard Roger-Vasselin 6-3 6-7 (5-7) 10-3 and seal victory, delighting fans that stayed into the early hours in Brisbane.
“We love playing for our country,” Djokovic said in his on-court interview. “Thanks to the people for staying to almost 1am to support us. You guys are true tennis fans.”
— ATPCup (@ATPCup) January 6, 2020
US Open champion Rafael Nadal was not required for double duty in Spain’s tie with Uruguay in Perth, which saw him hammer Pablo Cuevas 6-2 6-1 to give his country an unassailable lead.
Earlier Roberto Bautista Agut hammered Franco Roncadelli, with Pablo Carreno Busta and Feliciano Lopez rounding off the tie with a dead rubber doubles win over Ariel Behar and Juan Martin Fumeaux.
Dominic Thiem defeated Diego Schwartzman in straight sets as Austria beat Argentina 3-0 to claim their first win of the inaugural tournament, while Croatia and Japan remain undefeated after 2-1 victories over Poland and Georgia respectively.
South Africa got off the mark with a 3-0 beating of Chile, Kevin Anderson claiming his first win since Wimbledon following a long lay-off with a knee injury as he eased to a 6-0 6-3 triumph against Cristian Garin.