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U.S. Tennis Stars Leads 2-0 On Serbia In Davis Cup • Thanks To Querrey & Isner

Photo of Dusan Vemic by Jelena Vemic. Dusan is A Global Ambassador for 10sBalls • always a coach for his Serbian Davis Cup team.

 

 

USA up 2-0 on Serbia in Davis Cup first round thanks to wins by Querrey and Isner

 

By Ricky Dimon

 

Team USA will take Davis Cup match victories any way it can get them during a decade-long title drought. It will certainly take two victories on the same day.

 

The Americans got two wins on Friday and did it the hard way, battling past an undermanned but tough Serbian side in a pair of singles rubbers. Sam Querrey got the first-round tie in Nis, Serbia started by defeating Laslo Djere, 6-7(4), 6-2, 7-5, 6-4 before Isner edged Dusan Lajovic, 6-4, 6-7(7), 6-3, 3-6, 7-6(4).

 

Djere, a 22-year-old who once won the junior boys Orange Bowl, came out firing as an underdog with nothing to lose against the heavily-favored and 12th-ranked Querrey. After losing the first set, however, the 6’6” American restored order to the proceedings and powered his way to victory on the strength of 40 winners–including 20 aces.

 

“I expected a tough match,” Querrey said. “Davis Cups are always tricky. If you just look around at the other scores from the other ties today, there’s some close ones, with some guys where there was some ranking discrepancies, so Davis Cups are different. I came out as a little nervous, but once I got a break in the second set I settled in a little bit. It was a battle until the end, there. He had some looks at love-30 twice in the fourth and I was fortunate enough to serve those out. It just feels good to get through it.”

 

John Isner of the USA in action against Dusan Lajovic of Serbia during their singles match of the Davis Cup World Group first round tie between Serbia and the USA in Nis, Serbia, 02 February 2018. EPA-EFE/KOCA SULEJMANOVIC

Isner improved to 4-1 lifetime against Lajovic following Friday’s second match, but as usual it was not easy. Now nine of their 16 total sets against each other have required tiebreakers, including a pair on Friday. Isner came out on the short end of a dramatic second-set ‘breaker in this contest, but he did not make the same mistake again less than two hours later. With the Davis Cup competition no longer playing out fifth sets, another ‘breaker had decide it. Lajovic recovered from an early mini-break, but two straight return points for Isner at 5-4 and 6-4 ended things in fine fashion

 

“I knew the match was going to be tough,” the world No. 18 commented. “I didn’t come into this tie playing great tennis. It’s been awhile since I was playing really good tennis; it was at the beginning of November last year, in Paris. Didn’t play too well in Australia. You don’t just go out and play lights out; you play well from a culmination of winning matches, and winning matches like [this one].

 

“For me, personally, that’s exactly what I needed. I needed to play a match like that, get my legs fit, and my body needs to be sore. That’s what I needed. More importantly than that, I’m happy I was able to contribute to the USA being up 2-0. Sam did his job; I barely did my job, but we’re up 2-0.”

 

“Long and successful is how I would sum it up, in the briefest of sentences,” captain Jim Courier said of Friday’s happenings. “It was a grind. The matches were both highly competitive. There were some pivotal moments in the matches–John’s match, in particular, came pretty late. But it’s a satisfying feeling. We’ve been on the other side of days like today, so to be up 2-0 is a tremendous feeling and we’re very proud of these guys’ efforts.”

 

The United States, which last lifted the Davis Cup trophy in 2007 and has advanced to the semifinals only once since 2008 and not once 2012, is likely sending Ryan Harrison and Steve Johnson to the doubles court on Saturday. Harrison won the 2017 French Open doubles title with Michael Venus, while Johnson was a bronze medalist at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

 

Ricky contributes to 10sballs.com and also maintains his own tennis website, The Grandstand. You can follow him on twitter at @Dimonator.

 

Dusan giving the photographer his game face. Dusan’s sister is a world class photographer. Check her out. Recently she has been shooting FOOD. It’s so much easier than tennis. The ️food stays still….
Solinco on Dusan’s ️️STRINGS. KT Kim has developed the world’s greatest tennis string. Rackets. Bags. Socks. You name it. SOLINCO

 

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