Nashville | USA reach the Davis Cup semi-finals
The United States is the first nation to reach the semi-finals of this year’s Davis Cup event with the other three quarter-finals set to go one way or the other.
Jack Sock and Ryan Harrison defeated Belgium’s doubles team Sander Gille and Joran Vliegen, 5-7 7-6(1) 7-6(3) 6-4 in Nashville to give the Americans an unassailable 3-0 lead over the visitors in their quarter final clash after Joh Isner and Sam Querrey had provided the home team with a 2-0 led the previous day.
We were really excited to play; play here in Nashville. We felt the energy was great all week. We really wanted to come through. It’s a big goal of ours to represent the country well and to put together a good Davis Cup performance.Ryan Harrison
In the first set, the Belgians broke the U.S. to go up 6-5 in a game thanks to two double faults from Sock and a major volleying error by Harrison.
The American pair struck back to level at a set-all though the Belgians kept them honest by forcing them into deciding tie-breaks and it wasn’t until the final game of the match that they actually broke through those defences to claim victory after three hours of competitive play.
The U.S. last reached the World Group semi-finals in 2012, losing to Spain’s Davis Cup team led by David Ferrer and will face either Croatia or Kazakhstan in September for a place in the final.
“Meant a lot,” Ryan Harrison said of the win. “We were really excited to play; play here in Nashville. We felt the energy was great all week. We really wanted to come through. It’s a big goal of ours to represent the country well and to put together a good Davis Cup performance.
“We’re excited to have the opportunity to play in the semi-finals. Definitely not going to look ahead. We want to take this next match. We know we have all the weapons to get through if we play well. We’re going to do what we can to fight through to the final.”
With Belgium having been Davis Cup finalists in two of the past three years, the team sorely missed top players David Goffin and Steve Darcis, who did not play because of injury.
Meanwhile in the other ties, Spain need to win the last two singles rubbers of their tie in Valencia after the German pair of Tim Puetz and Jan Lennard Struff beat Feliciano Lopez and Marc Lopez in a marathon five-set rubber which lasted four hours and 40 minutes.
Puetz and Struff beat the Spanish pairing 6-3 6-4 3-6 6-7(4) 7-5 to give Germany a 2-1 lead and requiring just one more win to claim a place in the final unless Rafa Nadal and David Ferrer can raise their games to prevent them.
In the remaining two ties, the defending champions lead Italy 2-1 as do Croatia over Kazakhstan.