Davis Cup: Mahut and Herbert earn the second point for France- View: 1701 by Jovica Ilic
France is just a win away from advancing to their 18th Davis Cup final after Nicolas Mahut and Pierre-Hugues Herbert scored an expected 6-1 6-2 7-6 victory over Serbs Filip Krajinovic and Nenad Zimonjic in an hour and 50 minutes.
Two-time Grand Slam winners were the dominant figures in the first two sets, returning great and hitting winners from all over the court to completely outplay their rivals, and they closed the match in a tight third set to send France 2-1 in front. Everything worked well for the French pair, they had 13 aces and lost just 16 points on serve, getting broken twice.
On the other hand, they won almost 50% o the return points, creating 11 break points and converting 6 for a commanding win. Also, they had 37 winners and just 18 unforced errors, with a constant advantage in the rallies, while Filip and Nenad managed to hit 21 winners but also 23 errors, unable to force at least another set.
Herbert and Mahut were just too strong in the opening set, serving well and overpowering the opponents with an amazing net coverage, losing just 2 points on serve and scoring 2 breaks for a 6-1. The second set brought pretty much the same scenario, French team continued to rattle one easy hold after another and they broke Serbs in games 3 and 7, building 2 sets to love lead in just over an hour.
Mahut and Herbert broke at love to open the final set and it seemed that the match will not last for too long when they earned another break in game 7, moving 5-2 in front and serving for the win. Carried by this huge lead, they lost the ground a little bit, losing the next 4 games to find themselves 6-5 down, as the Serbs finally showed better tennis and fighting spirit.
Anyway, French squad grabbed the tie break by 7-3, with 3 mini breaks, to bring the win home in straight sets. ALSO READ: September 14, 1987: Lendl edges Wilander in an epic for his 3rd US Open .