Zverev, Kyrgios engineer Davis Cup singles split after Day 1

The Davis Cup first-round tie between Germany and Australia is tied up 1-1 following the first day of action thanks to singles victories by Alexander Zverev and Nick Kyrgios. Zverev got the visitors off to a strong start–just barely–by battling past Alex de Minaur 7-5, 4-6, 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(4) on Friday afternoon in Brisbane. Kyrgios answered for the Aussies in the form of a 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 defeat of Jan-Lennard Struff.

Zverev trailed two sets to one and also fell behind 3-0 in the fifth set before, but the world No. 5 ended up getting the best of the 18-year-old de Minaur after three hours and 54 minutes.

“I hope that will be the deciding point to get the win,’’ Zverev said. “We need three points; we’ve got one. We’ve got two more to go.’’

“He’s a top 10 player, and in the decisive moments he was able to come up with a couple of free points that really set the tone for the end of that match,’’ de Minaur commented. “Right now I couldn’t be more devastated. I left it all out there on court and at the moment I’m just feeling pretty bad, but overall I’m extremely proud of my effort. I left it all out there, gave it 110 per cent, and was that close to getting that first rubber.’’

Highlights:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zEjFOieiLao

The second rubber was not close at all. Kyrgios, who captured the Brisbane title last month (de Minaur reached the semifinals), cruised past Struff in just one hour and 37 minutes. The world No. 14 fired 21 aces compared to just one double-fault, served at 70 percent, and did not get broken a single time while saving one break point.

“Everybody expects him to take care of these matches, and I’ve been in that position before and it’s not an easy thing to do,” captain Lleyton Hewitt said of Kyrgios. “What he did today and how served was fantastic.’’

Highlights:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1KYV8wTJ_bY

Friday’s results guarantee that the fourth singles rubber between Zverev and Kyrgios will be live on Sunday. All four of their previous encounters came last season, with Kyrgios prevailing on three occasions–most recently via a 6-3, 7-5 decision in the Beijing semifinals.

2 Comments on Zverev, Kyrgios engineer Davis Cup singles split after Day 1

    • Sure was! The Demon put out a hellacious effort and the Giraffe stood tall in the end and finally won a 5 setter. Got a feeling that de Minaur just might be the Real Deal.

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