Davis Cup: Argentina leads 2-0. Strong start for Raonic

by   |  VIEW 2131
Davis Cup: Argentina leads 2-0. Strong start for Raonic

Facing each other only for the third time in the Davis Cup, Argentina has entered the clash with Colombia in San Juan as the favorite and they are 2-0 in front after the opening two rubbers. World number 14 Diego Schwartzman needed two hours and 43 minutes to dismiss Santiago Giraldo 6-3 6-1 6-7 6-1 and deliver the first point for the home country. Diego had the edge from the baseline and he performed better on both the first and second serve to create 20 break points, converting 10 to stay on the positive side of the scoreboard in three of the four sets.

Giraldo had 10 break chances but he managed to take only four and that wasn't enough for more than a set, although he had to save a match point before taking it in the tie break. Schwartzman had the strings of the match in his hands right from the start, serving well and scoring breaks in games seven and nine to rattle off four straight games for a 6-3.

Nothing could stop him in set number two as well, taking the opening five games to extend his streak to nine straight games, earning breaks in games two and four and closing the set after saving a break point in game seven for a 6-1, looking good to cross the finish line in no time at all.

Santiago suffered three straight breaks at the start of the second set to find himself 4-1 down but he kept fighting, winning the next four games to take a 5-4 lead before he lost serve again in game 11, allowing Diego to serve for the win in the following game.

The Argentinian wasted a match point to lose serve and he lost the tie break 7-3 to keep Giraldo in the match for at least one more set. Both players had their chances in set number four but it was the Argentinian who grabbed breaks in games two and six to win the set 6-1 and secure the first point after his fourth Davis Cup win.

Guido Pella needed just under four hours to defeat Daniel Elahi Galan 3-6 6-4 4-6 6-3 6-2, scoring a very important win for Argentina and allowing their doubles squad to fight for the overall win on Saturday. This was the second win of the season for Pella in the Davis Cup and the fifth overall, earning it after converting six out of 18 break points, losing serve four times on the other hand to keep the Colombian in contention before taking control in sets four and fifth when he had no room for errors.

Elahi Galan was 6-3 4-2 in front before Pella grabbed four straight games to clinch the second set 6-4 after breaking his rival in games eight and 10. Fro 4-1 up in the third set, the Argentinian lost five games in a row to hand the set to his rival and he had to be careful in the rest of the match if he wanted to avoid the defeat.

There were no breaks in the first seven games of the fourth set and Pella moved ahead with a break that pushed him 5-3 up, closing the set in the following game to set up a decider. There, he scored two breaks in games three and seven, serving well to seal the deal and send Argentina 2-0 up.

Playing his first Davis Cup match since 2015, Milos Raonic has clinched his 15th singles rubber win following a solid 6-3 6-2 6-2 win over Thiemo De Bakker in an hour and 45 minutes. Milos fired 21 aces and he earned eight breaks to keep the pressure on his rival who had to lay down his weapons in straight sets despite the fact he broke the Canadian three times.

Interestingly, Raonic suffered a break in the very first game of the match but he pulled it back in game two after a well-constructed point. A volley winner secured another break for Milos in the fourth game but De Bakker was there to fight, reducing the deficit after a smash winner in the next game to stay on the positive side of the scoreboard.

He fell behind in the following game again, though, suffering a break at love in game six after a return winner from Milos who forged a 4-2 advantage. Raonic claimed the set with a service winner in game nine and he was at the top of his game in set number two, serving well and keeping the pressure on Thiemo who failed to deal with it.

Milos moved 3-2 ahead with a break in game five and to an even bigger 5-2 lead when the Dutchman netted a forehand in the seventh game. An ace in the next game sent Milos two sets to love up and he was hoping for a similar outcome in the third set as well.

There, he fends off two break points in the second game before breaking his rival to gain a 2-1 advantage. De Bakker broke back in the next game after a terrible smash from Milos at the net but the advantage was again on the side of the home player when he played another good return game for a 3-2.

Another break of serve sent Raonic 5-2 in front and he completed the win with a smash winner in the eighth game to deliver the first point for Canada. Friday's results: