Czech Republic beats Kazakhstan and reaches Davis Cup semis

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Czech Republic won the Davis Cup 2013 quarter-final tie against Kazakhstan after Lukas Rosol defeated Evgeny Korolev in the only Sunday’s match.

Having fallen 0-2 back on Friday, Kazakhstan desperately needed a doubles win in order to keep their semifinal dream alive. To the joy and relief of the home crowd Yuriy Schukin and Andrey Golubev were up to their task. Czech pair Jan Hajek-Radek Stepanek got close to clinch the opener, but they failed to serve it out at 5-4, enabling the Kazakhs to move one set up. The latter managed to build on their lead and achieve a 7-6 (2), 6-4, 6-3 straight sets victory, thus clawing one point back to make it 2-1 in Czech Republic’s favor.

On Sunday the Czech captain fielded Rosol, while the Kazakhs put their hopes in Korolev, ranked 187. There was little to separate the athletes in the first three sets – all serves were held in the opening one before the Czech seized the tie-break. He was trailing by a break in the following set, but prevented Korolev to serve it out at 5-3. Still, the home player kept his composure in the tie-breaker and made it one set each. The crucial moment in the third set occurred in the tenth game when Korolev could not capitalize on his one break advantage and missed a chance to grab the set on his serve at 5-4 – Rosol then moved on to win another breaker. The outcome of the tie was practically decided at that point as the Kazakh suffered an early loss of serve in the fourth set and could not recover from the shock. Rosol added another break later on and sealed the match with a 7-6 (5), 6-7 (2), 7-6 (5), 6-2 win.

The Czechs, who have made it to Davis Cup semis for the fourth time in five years, moved to the first place on the ITF Davis Cup Nations Rankings. They will host Argentine in September’s semifinals.

Kazakhstan – Czech Republic 1-3

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