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Davis Cup: Lukas Rosol beats Yuki Bhambri, gives Czechs 1-0 lead

News Agencies | Updated on: 13 February 2017, 4:40 IST

Lukas Rosol blunted Yuki Bhambri's challenge in straight sets as Czech Republic took a 1-0 lead in the Davis Cup World Group play-off tie in New Delhi on 18 September.

World number 85 Rosol stamped his class as he thrashed 125th ranked Yuki 6-2, 6-1, 7-5 in one hour and 55 minutes at RK Khanna Tennis stadium.

The temperature was 31 degree Celsius at the start of the match but neither the conditions nor the game of Yuki proved challenging for the tall Czech, who was ranked as high as 26 last year.

Rosol served extremely well and hit flat and furious groundstrokes, imposing himself on Yuki. The Czech player played smartly and served in the range of 200km per hour and sometimes more than that, firing as many as 11 aces in the match.

Yuki put up some resistance in the third set but could not utilise the chances, squandering as many as five break points in the 10th game.

The Czech, who beat Rafael Nadal in 2012 Wimbledon second round, fired five service winners in that game alone after ebbing down 0-40, showing his cool temperament under pressure.

Rosol hit 50 winners to 21 of Yuki and made for his six double faults with his huge game.

The only time Yuki could trouble the Czech was when he engaged his opponent in long rallies but those were very few as Rosol blunted Yuki's challenge with ease.

India's number two player Somdev Devvarman, ranked 164, plays Czech number one Jiri Vesley, ranked 40, in the second singles. Somdev has not lost a singles match on the Centre Court here and the fans who have turned up to watch India fight would hope that he maintains his impeccable record.

Both Yuki and Rosol began with solid holds with the Czech hitting service winners as big as 210km per hour. In each of the first two games, he hit two aces with a speed of more than 200km per hour. As the 6 feet 5 inches tall Czech was serving too well, it was crucial for Yuki to hold his own but consistent forehand errors cost him the fifth game.

Rosol hit a forehand winner on Yuki's serve at 30-30 to earn first breakpoint of the match and the Indian youngster buried his forehand on the net on that point to hand the rival the lead. Rosol kept serving big and consolidated the lead with solid hold yet again.

The unforced errors continued to flow from Yuki's racquet as he smashed one overhead volley long to be down by another breakpoint and double faulted on the next point to hand Rosol a comfortable 5-2 cushion. Exactly 24 minutes into the match, Rosol was serving for the set and he sealed it with a backhand winner.

It was one-way traffic in the second set as Rosol pounded Yuki, who managed to get on board only once. With two consecutive breaks and two easy holds, Rosol rushed to a 4-0 lead and with one more break closed the set in his favour.

Yuki played a little better in the third set, managing to get his first break point of the match when Rosol hit a forehand long. However, the Indian let go the advantage by dropping serve in the sixth.

Having Rosol down 0-40 was the best chance for Yuki to put pressure and get a break but he squandered all five chances. Serving to stay in the match, he buried a backhand to net to give the Czech two match points and then hit a forehand on the net to give the visiting team 1-0 up in the tie.


First published: 18 September 2015, 3:57 IST