Canada eyes keeping Davis Cup World Group spot

Lloyd Doyle
September 18, 2017

Earlier, Ramkumar Ramanathan, ranked 154, defeated debutant Brayden Schnur in a marathon four setter.

When and where will the Davis Cup tie between Canada and India be played? Drafted into the side in the last minute, Raja dropped serve five times in the match, twice while serving under pressure at 5-6 in the first two sets.

India missed an opportunity to join the elite teams in Davis Cup World Group 2018 as Ramkumar Ramanathan failed to win the decisive fourth rubber of the play-off against Canda's teenage sensation Denis Shapovalov on Sunday, September 17.

Denis Shapovalov should play a major role in Canada's Davis Cup prospects in the years ahead.

"Clinching for my country is huge", Shapovalov said. He might be higherranked than both the Indians at number 82 but he is coming into the tie after five straight loses on the ATP Tour, the last being in the first round of the US Open. He then secured the match's first break in the seventh game of the second set to take 2-0 lead. And once Shapovalov wasted the match point in the third set tie-break, it seemed the tide had turned. The battle grew in intensity and Bhambri was eating into Shapovalov's energy with his dogged approach. "That time, Marty told me to play more with spin". In the third set, Shapovalov broke the Indian at love in the sixth game to open up a 4-2 lead and won the tie in the ninth game on an unforced error from Ramanathan.

This weekend's Davis Cup semifinals presents a mix of teams with a rich history in the competition (Australia and France) and those whose success has come only recently (Serbia and Belgium). Bhambri should take a lot of heart out of the defeat but would do well to up the ante.

Playing smartly, Bhambri made his serve to jump from the court by employing more of his shoulder to create extra bounce and it helped him hold serve throughout the match.

It was one-way traffic till the eighth game as the Canadian left-hander lost only three points till he came out to serve out the opening set.

Schnur won the first set before dropping the next three.

India captain Mahesh Bhupathi has sprung a surprise by teaming up Rohan Bopanna with Purav Raja instead of Saketh Myneni for the doubles rubber, to be played on Saturday. Experts believe that in the absence of world number 11 Milos Raonic in the opposition camp, it is India's best chance to re-enter the World Group in recent years.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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