Thanks to Andy Murray and James Ward, Great Britain has reached the Davis Cup World Group Quarterfinals for the first time since 1986…ancient tennis history for a pair of blokes who hadn’t even arrived on the planet yet. In that Quarterfinal Tie back in July of ’86, Team Great Britain (with Jeremy Bates, Andrew Castle and Colin Dowdeswell) would fall to Aussies Pat Cash, John Fitzgerald and Paul McNamee, a trio that would go on to win the 1986 Davis Cup Title.
Murray delivered the knock-out punch on Sunday at Petco Park in San Diego, dropping only the second set in a tie-break. Both teams decided to forego playing the fifth “dead” rubber.
R4: Andy Murray def. Sam Querrey 7-6(5), 6-7(3), 6-1, 6-3
Next up in April, Team Great Britain will face Italy on the road…most likely on clay again. Italy defeated Argentina this weekend on the shoulders of Fabio Fognini, who won both of his singles matches over Juan Monaco and Carlos Berloq, and teamed with Simone Bolelli to win Saturday’s doubles rubber.
In other Davis Cup play…
- Czech Republic defeated The Netherlands 3-2 — (Next: Head to Japan)
- Japan defeated Canada 4-1 — (Next: Host Czech Republic)
- Germany defeated Spain 4-1 — (Next: Head to France)
- France defeated Australia 5-0 — (Next: Host Germany)
- Kazakhstan defeated Belgiuim 3-2 — (Next: Head to Switzerland)
- Switzerland defeated Serbia 3-2 — (Next: Host Kazakhstan)
— Andy Taylor (@StadiumAndy) February 2, 2014
If you’re paying attention at home…three of four teams who reached the Davis Cup Semifinals last year were bounced in the first round this weekend: Canada, Serbia and Argentina. Still in the hunt? Tomas Berdych and Radek Stepanek of the Czech Republic, two-time defending Davis Cup Champions. The World Group Playoffs, the weekend following the US Open, will be packed with Davis Cup powerhouses battling simply to stay in the World Group for 2015…