Serbia to face Czech Republic in Davis Cup final in November
Serbia beat Canada 3-2 in semifinal in Belgrade
Novak Djokovic and Janko Tipsarevic win final day singles matches
Britain return to the World Group with win over Croatia
Novak Djokovic’s Serbia will play holders the Czech Republic in the Davis Cup final but it was the World No.1’s teammate Janko Tipsarevic who proved the final day hero in Belgrade.
Djokovic, going into semifinal tie against Canada off the back of his defeat to Rafael Nadal in the U.S. Open, played his part by drawing Serbia level at two rubbers apiece as he beat Milos Raonic 7-6 6-2 6-2.
But it left the pressure on Tipsarevic, who has slipped down the rankings this season, as he took on Vasek Pospisil in the deciding singles match.
Tipsarevic took the first set on tiebreaker and romped through the second with partisan support from the 10,000 home crowd playing its part.
Pospisil was nursing an elbow injury and fell 5-2 down in the third only to recover the break and force a second tiebreak.
Again Tipsarevic went clear and had four match points at 6-2, only for the Canadian to save them all to level.
Undaunted World No.23 Tipsarevic took the next two points to seal their passage to a November 15-17 showdown in Prague with the Czechs.
“This is really special, one of the happiest moments of my professional career,” he told the official Davis Cup website.
“Janko played an incredible match under huge pressure. I think we will also find the energy for the final,” said his captain Bogdan Obradovic.
Serbia, with Djokovic the key influence, won the Davis Cup in 2010, but are without Viktor Troicki, who is serving an 18 month doping ban handed down by the International Tennis Federation.
Earlier, Djokovic easily accounted for the big hitting Raonic to set up the decider. “The most important thing was to try to neutralize his serve. It’s not easy to read,” he said.
The Czechs sealed their final place by forging an unassailable 3-0 lead over Argentina in Prague Saturday.
While the semifinalists battled it out, other nations were left to reclaim their places in the 16-strong World Group for next year’s competition.
Spain, led by Nadal, completed a 5-0 whitewash of Ukraine, while World No.3 Andy Murray beat Croatia’s Ivan Dodig Sunday to seal Britain’s victory and a return to the top tier of men’s team tennis.
Steve Darcis, who shocked Nadal in the first round at Wimbledon, was the hero for Belgium in their 3-2 win over Israel.
He defeated Amir Weintraub 6-2 6-2 6-2 in the deciding rubber in Antwerp.