Davis Cup 2015: First Round, Day 3 Preview

9 time former champions France and 2010 champions Serbia have progressed to the quarter-final after taking an unassailable 3-0 lead on the second day of the 2015 Davis Cup (by BNP Paribas); while 9 time winners Great Britain, 1976 champion Italy, 28 time champions Australia, Brazil, Canada and Belgium have a 2-1 lead going into the reverse singles matches on Sunday.

Here are the results of the doubles and predictions for the reverse singles on day 3:

Frankurt (Germany)

Germany 0 France 3 : The established duo of Nicolas Mahut and veteran Julien Benneteau prevailed over Benjamin Becker and Andre Begeman in straight sets; surprisingly Phillip Kohlschreiber did not play the doubles in an attempt to keep German hopes alive and end a 78 year loosing streak against the visitors who finished runner up to Switzerland in 2014. The reverse singles pits Kohlschreiber against Simon and Jan Lennard Struff against Gael Monfils in matches only for the record books.

Becker/Begeman lost to Benneteau/Mahut 4-6, 3-6, 2-6.

Glasgow (Scotland, Great Britain)

Great Britain 2 USA 1 : The Bryan brothers Mike and Bob claimed USA’s first rubber but were severely tested by their unfancied opponents Dominic Inglot and Jamie Murray who fought back from a two set deficit before loosing the 3 hour 39 minute match 9-7 in the fifth set. Andy Murray takes on John Isner in the first of the reverse singles between the top players of both teams and James Ward will clash against Donald Young. Murray should seal a spot for the home team to face France next as the 20th ranked Isner has been struggling of late.

Inglot/Jamie Murray lost to Mike Bryan/Bob Bryan 3-6,2-6,6-3,7-6(8),7-9.

Ostrava (Czech Republic)

Czech Republic 1 Australia 2 : Former world number one Lleyton Hewitt partnering Sam Groth against Davis cup rookie Adam Pavlasek and last minute replacement Jiri Vesley who stepped in for Jan Mertl could not book Australia’s ticket into the second round since 2006 as they lost the 3 hour and 14 minute rubber in five sets. Australia would still be favoured to reach the quarter-final as Bernard Tomic plays Lucas Rosol; while Thanasi Kokkinakis faces Vesley.

Vesley/Pavlasek d. Hewitt/Groth 1-6,7-6(2),3-6,7-6(4),6-2.

Astana (Kazakhstan)

Kazakhstan 1 Italy 2 : The Australian Open men’s doubles champions Fabio Fognini and Simone Bolleli clinched a four set win against Andrey Golubev and Aleksandr Nedovyesov as Italy enter the reverse singles with 2-1 lead in the tie. The two in form players Mikhail Kukushkin and Andreas Seppi will contest the first reverse singles while Bolleli faces Andrey Golubev who would be playing his third match in as many days. This could go down to the last match and Italy have the edge as they may replace Bolleli with the 22nd ranked Fognini should there be a live fifth rubber. Italy should progress.

Golubev/Nedovyesov lost to Fognini/Bolleli 6-7(4),3-6,7-6(13),4-6.

Buenos Aires (Argentina)

Argentina 1 Brazil 2 : The established Brazilian pairing of doubles World number 3 Marcelo Melo and number 12 Bruno Soares put the visitors 2-1 ahead as they whipped Diego Schwartzman and Carlos Berlocq in straight sets. Berlocq who lost a marathon five setter on Friday surprisingly replaced left hander Frederico Delbonis, but as expected the Brazilians were victorious and they could play Serbia next. The remaining matches will pit Leonardo Mayer against Joao Soares; both won their opening day matches, while the win less Berlocq is slated to play the left hander Thomaz Belluci. It is likely that Delbonis might play the final tie. While Mayer should beat Soares, the experience of Belluci once ranked inside the top 20 should help Brazil advance to the quarter-final.

Schwartzman/Berlocq lost to Melo/Soares 5-7,3-6,4-6.

Krajlevo (Serbia)

Serbia 3 Croatia 0 : World number one Novak Djokovic replaced Victor Troicki to pair up with the veteran Nenad Zimonjic as Serbia entered the second round. The home team won in straight sets against the inexperienced pairing of Marin Draganja and Franko Skugor. Djokovic will play the promising teenager Borna Coric while Troicki will play little known Mate Delic in the meaningless reverse singles. It is likely that Fillip Krajinovic who won both his matches in last years playoff tie in India will play one of the matches as the tie is already decided in favour of the home team.

Djokovic/Zimonjic d. Draganja/Skugor 6-3,6-4,6-1.

Vancouver (Canada)

Canada 2 Japan 1 : Veteran left hander Daniel Nestor partnered Vasek Pospisil as they clinched a fascinating five setter in just under 3 hours against Go Soeda and Yasutaka Uchiyama as they gave the home team a 2-1 edge on Saturday. In the best match of the entire weekends action in Davis Cup; 6th ranked Milos Raonic will play 4th ranked Kei Nishokori in a battle of two young guns while Pospisil faces Tatsumo Ito. The odds favour Canada on their home soil played at the Thunderbolt arena and it would be little surprise if the lower ranked Raonic defeats Nishikori.

Pospisil/Nestor d. Soeda/Uchiyama 7-5,2-6,6-3,3-6,6-3.

Liege (Belgium)

Belgium 2 Switzerland 1 : The 2014 champions Switzerland are im grave danger of being eliminated as Ruben Bemelmans and Neils Desein overcame the loss of the first set to win in four sets against the experienced Michael Lammer and the newcomer Adrien Bossel. The visitors trail 1-2 heading into Sunday’s reverse singles. Steve Darcis should beat Henri Laaksonen in a battle of two players who won on day 1 leaving the last rubber between Michael Lammer and Ruben Bemelmans meaningless.

Bemelmans/Desein d. Lammer/Bossel 1-6,6-3,6-2,6-2.

– Rasesh Mehta [Rasesh Mehta is an analyst with the Tennis Galaxy.You can reach him at the email: sportzcosmos@gmail.com]

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