The Reuters global sports blog
Getting the job done at the Davis Cup
There were no real surprises in the Davis Cup result this weekend. It was all about getting the job done and winning and that’s what the boys did. Captain Leon Smith knew before the match that he would definitely win the 2 matches against the Tunisian number 2 and the doubles as well, which would give Team Great Britain the 3 rubbers for victory.
Tunisia got off to a perfect start with the Tunisian number 1, Malek Jaziri beating the British number 2 Jamie Baker in 4 sets. Both men were nervous as you would expect in an opening rubber. Both men also struggled with cramp which is unusual for an indoor match. Cramping can happen from being dehydrated, lack of fitness or nerves. I believe it had to be the latter. Then British number 1, James Ward demolished the Tunisian number 2 in 3 easy sets to level the tie at 1 rubber a piece.
Going into the doubles, Team GB were very confident with the first time pairing of Colin Fleming and Jamie Murray. They got the job done in 4 sets to give GB a 2 rubbers to 1 lead. It took them a little time to gel because they do not play regularly on the tour. The pairing was also selected because if one of the singles players got injured Colin Fleming could step in for singles if needed.
On the final day the two number 1’s played first, then the number 2’s. The match between British number 1, James Ward and the Tunisian number 1 Malek Jaziri was the match of the tie. It was a ding dong battle, with the British number 1 having to fight back from 2 sets to 1 down and also a break down in the 5th set to win 3-6 6-3 3-6 6-3 8-6. James showed a lot of character and sealed victory for Team GB. Mentally this was a good victory for James and hopefully this will help him on the main tour to achieve his goals and give him more belief. Jamie Baker won the dead rubber to make the final score 4 rubbers to 1.
Job done and on to the next match which will be a step up in class against Luxembourg.