Published: Wed, November 20, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Davis Cup Finals: Nadal helps Spain past Russia, Canada stun USA

Davis Cup Finals: Nadal helps Spain past Russia, Canada stun USA

"It's just currently right now we're on a run and we have tons of great players".

France, bidding to win their 11th Davis Cup title, made a bright start as the experienced Jo-Wilfried Tsonga raced to a 6-2 6-1 victory over Japan's Yasutaka Uchiyama. Crowds poured into the Madrid stadium to watch the world's top names compete for their countries.

Matches will consist of two singles and one doubles rubber, all played over three sets on a hard court at the Caja Magica.

"He played brilliant. I was lucky at the end of the match".

That was the last final before radical changes to the historic team event, voted in by the International Tennis Federation (ITF) a year ago in association with Barcelona footballer Pique's investment firm Kosmos, came into effect.

"The ambiance changed into unheard of", said Nadal.

"Being an American tennis player, you are kind of used to not getting the support", the 22-year-old Opelka said.

PASCAL GILTAIRE, Belgium's tennis supporters club president, longing for the previous format.

A two-thirds majority among the 140 nations was needed and 71% backed the proposals.

The Canadians claimed a historic victory after winning a pair of singles matches over the United States in Davis Cup tennis action on Tuesday.

The six group winners and two best-placed runners-up progress to the quarter-finals. The final will be contested on Sunday. "If you play Davis Cup, progressively the stadium is fleshy".

The former world number one is particularly concerned the Madrid finals will be devoid of the tribal and boisterous atmosphere for which the home-and-away format was renowned.

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"That's my opinion. I don't know whether that's realistic or not, whether that's possible".

Captain Leon Smith had been coy about his team selection and there had been speculation he might rest Murray given the relative weakness of Wednesday's opposition.

No Federer or Medvedev - who is playing?

"Which it's a lot of responsibility and pressure on them because this is the most traditional, historic team event in our sport, over 100 years".

Defending champions Croatia were severely weakened by the withdrawal of Marin Cilic through injury and were beaten 3-0 by Russian Federation - who were missing No.5 Daniil Medvedev.

"This is the toughest group, I think, so there is no easy match".

"The only reason I came was because it's the last match for Steve Darcis", said a Belgian fan.

"Playing at one week, at one venue, deciding it all, is not the Davis Cup".

Which of the world's top 20 are playing?

"Then, of course, scheduling was always an issue, for both ATP Cup and Davis Cup".

"There are so many different things, so many different people and entities involved that it's really not easy just to say, Let's pick that date, because, you know, you have so many different tournaments that you are harming maybe because of that week and so forth and so forth".

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