Great Britain score 2-1 win over Czech Republic to reach Davis Cup quarters
Joe Salisbury and Neal Skupski clinched the doubles rubber to set up a quarter-final against Germany or Serbia
Great Britain scored a hard-fought 2-1 win over Czech Republic in Group C action in Innsbruck, Austria on Sunday to qualify for the quarter-final stage of the Davis Cup Finals. The Brits join Italy, Croatia and Kazakhstan in the last eight with four more sports in the last eight still to be decided later on Sunday.
Dan Evans was upset by youngster Tomas Machac in the opening singles match but Cameron Norrie levelled the tie with victory over Jiri Leheca before Joe Salisbury and Neal Skiupski won the deciding doubles, beating Machac and Jiri Vesely 6-4, 6-2. They’ll play Germany or Serbia in the quarters.
“(It was) damned good,” Britain captain Leon Smith said. “Real good. I’m really, really proud of them. Doesn’t matter
who wins or losing rubbers, everyone is in it together, everyone is supporting at the end.
“I thought Thomas Machak, who played Evo in the first match, he played out of his skin. He was great. Then Cam plays
another young guy who played out of his skin. Cam is so great at finding a way through. Then he starts playing
some great tennis. That’s a testament because of who he is now as a player, the level he plays at. I’m really, really
lucky to have him in the team.”
Machac causes major upset to beat Evans
In the first match of the tie, Tomas Machac put on an inspiring performance to oust Dan Evans 6-2, 7-5 and give the Czechs a 1-0 lead.
The 21-year-old Machac easily swept past Evans in the first set and took an early break in the second before Evans was able to fight his way back into the match.
Evans broke Machac’s serve twice to go up 5-3 but failed to serve out the set and force a decider. Ranked 143rd in the world, Machac won the final four games in a row to complete the 6-3, 7-5 win over 25th ranked Evans.
Norrie wins to get Brits back on track
In the second rubber, world No 12 Cameron Norrie needed three sets to beat 20-year-old Jiri Lehecka 6-1, 2-6, 6-1 in one hour and 41 minutes.
The win got Great Britain back on level terms with the Czech Republic at 1-1 with the deciding doubles still to play. The win improved Norrie to 2-0 in singles play at this year’s Davis Cup Finals.
Salisbury/Skupski win doubles to seal Davis Cup quarters berth
With the match tied at 1-1, it all came down to the deciding doubles rubber where Salisbury and Skupski put on an impressive display to defeat Machac and Vesely in one hour and six minutes.