Roundup: Czechs cruise to quarters

Updated: February 2, 2014, 5:12 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

OSTRAVA, Czech Republic -- Defending champion Czech Republic reached the quarterfinals of the Davis Cup on Sunday after Tomas Berdych won the first reverse singles to clinch the first-round tie.

Berdych, an Australian Open semifinalist, dispatched Thiemo de Bakker 6-1, 6-4, 6-3 on an indoor hard court at CEZ Arena to give the Czechs an unbeatable 3-1 lead. In the final meaningless match, Igor Sijsling defeated Lukas Rosol 6-3, 6-3 to reduce the Czech overall victory to 3-2 in the best-of-five series.

Berdych was never threatened and converted his first match point with a forehand winner.

Seeking their third straight Davis Cup title, the Czechs won the 10th consecutive Davis Cup series. They will travel for the April 4-6 quarterfinal to Japan, which beat Canada 4-1 in another first-round tie.

Italy ousts Argentina to reach quarters

MAR DEL PLATA, Argentina -- Italy reached the quarterfinals of the Davis Cup when Fabio Fognini defeated Carlos Berlocq of Argentina to give Italy an unassailable 3-1 lead in the best-of-five series.

Fognini defeated Berlocq 6-7 (5), 6-4, 6-1, 6-4 in 3 hours, 38 minutes.

It's Italy's first victory over Argentina in Davis Cup play, and the loss ended Argentina's 12-year streak of reaching the quarterfinals.

Italy took control on Saturday when doubles pair Fognini and Simone Bolelli defeated Argentina's Eduardo Schwank and Horacio Zeballos.

Italy will face Great Britain, which advanced past the United States on Sunday, in the quarterfinals.

Japan beats Canada

TOKYO -- Japan won its Davis Cup World Group tie, clinching a quarterfinal berth when Frank Dancevic of Canada was forced to retire in the second set of his reverse singles match with Kei Nishikori.

With Nishikori leading 6-2, 1-0, Dancevic withdrew with a stomach injury giving Japan an insurmountable 3-1 lead. Japan advances to the quarterfinal round for the first time.

It was the latest in a series of injuries for the Canadians. Milos Raonic pulled out with a left-foot injury on Thursday while Vasek Pospisil, who was originally slated to play doubles on Saturday, was unable to recover in time from an injury.

Nishikori, who is No. 18 in the world rankings, won both his singles matches and also played in Japan's doubles win on Saturday.

Japan improved to 6-0 against Canada in Davis Cup play. The two countries last met in 1938.

Go Soeda beat Peter Polansky 6-1, 6-4 in the dead rubber to widen the lead to 4-1.

France blanks Australia

LA ROCHE-SUR-YON, France -- Gael Monfils completed France's 5-0 rout of Australia in the first round of the Davis Cup by defeating Nick Kyrgios 7-6 (5), 6-4.

Monfils dropped serve twice but broke Kyrgios three times, after Julien Benneteau cruised past Thanasi Kokkinakis 6-4, 6-1 in Sunday's first reverse singles match.

Benneteau broke Kokkinakis four times and did not face a single break point, hitting 30 winners to 14 for his opponent.

France secured a spot in the quarterfinals of the competition when Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Richard Gasquet defeated Lleyton Hewitt and Chris Guccione 5-7, 7-6 (4), 6-2, 7-5 in Saturday's doubles to hand the hosts an unassailable 3-0 lead.

On Friday, Tsonga eased past Hewitt 6-3, 6-2, 7-6 (2), and Gasquet routed Kyrgios 7-6 (3), 6-2, 6-2.

France will face Germany in the quarterfinals while Australia will compete in the playoffs to stay in the World Group.

Despite the defeat, Australia still holds a 10-5 record against France in the competition.

Germany completes 4-1 victory

FRANKFURT, Germany -- Daniel Brands defeated Roberto Bautista Agut 7-6 (5), 6-4 to wrap up a 4-1 win for Germany over Spain in their Davis Cup World Group first round tie.

Brands was the only German player available to play Sunday, after Tommy Haas and Philipp Kohlschreiber won their doubles match Saturday for an unassailable 3-0 lead.

Kohlschreiber pulled out of his reverse singles match against Spanish No. 1 Feliciano Lopez, while Haas was also unavailable. Florian Mayer had a shoulder injury.

German captain Carsten Arriens was whistled and heckled by the home crowd when he announced there would only be one match. Germany, which last won the trophy in 1993, plays France in the quarterfinals in April, while five-time champion Spain faces a World Group playoff in September.

Serbia cushions loss to Switzerland

NOVI SAD, Serbia -- Dusan Lajovic and Filip Krajinovic won the reverse singles to cushion Switzerland's triumph over Serbia to 3-2 in their Davis Cup first round World Group tie.

Switzerland had already secured the match with its doubles victory on Saturday. On Friday, Roger Federer and Stanislas Wawrinka both won their singles matches and pulled out of the reverse singles.

Lajovic beat Michael Lammer 6-3, 3-6, 6-4 to win Serbia's first point of the match. The 102nd-ranked Lajovic is Serbia's top player in the absence of Novak Djokovic, Janko Tipsarevic and Viktor Troicki.

Filip Krajinovic beat Marco Chiudinelli 6-4, 6-4.

Switzerland will face Kazakhstan in the quarterfinals in April.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.


ALSO SEE