Bri­tain fight back, Croa­tia eye fi­nal

The Sun (Malaysia) - - SPORTS -

ANDY and Jamie Mur­ray kept Great Bri­tain’s hopes of re­tain­ing their Davis Cup ti­tle alive yes­ter­day while 2005 win­ners Croa­tia took a step closer to the fi­nal.

In Glas­gow, the Mur­ray brothers de­feated Ar­gentina’s Juan Martin del Potro and Leonardo Mayer 6-1, 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 while in Zadar, Marin Cilic and Ivan Dodig downed topranked French pair Pier­reHugues Her­bert Ni­co­las Mahut 7-6 (8/6), 5-7, 7-6 (8/6), 6-3.

Both semi­fi­nals are fine­ly­poised with Ar­gentina and Croa­tia hold­ing 2-1 leads ahead of the re­verse sin­gles.

Lead­ing 2-0 from Fri­day’s sin­gles, Ar­gentina cap­tain Daniel Or­sanic se­lected Del Potro along­side Mayer in­stead of Fed­erico Del­bo­nis as he looked to kill off the semi­fi­nal.

How­ever, the tac­tic back­fired as world No. 2 Andy Mur­ray and his older brother Jamie se­cured a thrilling vic­tory.

“Yes­ter­day was a very tough day. To come out and get the win with Jamie to­day was great,” three-time Grand Slam win­ner Andy said.

“He played un­be­liev­ably well through­out the whole match. We are 2-1 down and it is a tough po­si­tion to be in, but it is a bet­ter po­si­tion that we were in at the be­gin­ning of the day and I still be­lieve we can come back.”

Ar­gentina are look­ing to reach their fourth fi­nal in 10 years.

Kyle Ed­mund is sched­uled to face Del Potro al­though the Ar­gen­tine star hinted that he may sit out what could be the de­ci­sive rub­ber as Andy Mur­ray is favourite to de­feat Guido Pella in the first re­verse sin­gles.

Af­ter his five-hour and seven-minute 6-4, 5-7, 6-7 (5/7), 6-3, 6-4 epic win against Andy Mur­ray on Fri­day, the ex­pec­ta­tion was that Del Potro, still work­ing his way back into the game fol­low­ing wrist surgery, would take the day off yes­ter­day.

The gam­ble to pick the 27year-old didn’t look like pay­ing off with the Ar­gen­tine pair­ing ini­tially look­ing like strangers on the court.

“I felt tired but that is nor­mal. I think for the team it was the best op­tion to play the dou­bles,” said del Potro.

“I think we did re­ally well. We had some chances but we couldn’t win.”

Cilic was a sur­prise call-up for the dou­bles for Croa­tia as he re­placed Marin Dra­ganja.

But he didn’t let his side down as he se­cured his sec­ond point of the week­end when he and Dodig downed Her­bert and Mahut to fol­low their win over Bob and Mike Bryan in the quar­ter­fi­nal suc­cess against the United States.

In the re­verse sin­gles, 2014 US Open champion Cilic faces Richard Gas­quet while Borna Coric will tackle Lu­cas Pouille. – afp

–AFPPIX

Bri­tain’s Andy Mur­ray (right) and Jamie Mur­ray cel­e­brate af­ter beat­ing Ar­gentina’s Juan Martín del Potro and Leonardo Mayer in a Davis Cup dou­bles semi­fi­nal.

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