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September 21, 2009

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Home » Sports » Tennis

Spain, Czechs storm into Davis final

SPAIN will defend its Davis Cup title in a home final against the Czech Republic after both teams won their semifinals 3-0 on Saturday with a day to spare.

Feliciano Lopez and Tommy Robredo upset Jonathan Erlich and Andy Ram 7-6 (6), 6-7 (7), 6-4, 6-2 as Spain beat Israel at Torre Pacheco for the chance to win its fourth title this decade, and become the first team to win successive Davis Cups since Sweden in 1997-98.

"To be in the finals two years running is incredible," Robredo said.

The Czechs surprisingly paired Radek Stepanek and Tomas Berdych a day after they took nearly 10 hours to win the opening singles against host Croatia. Together, they defeated Marin Cilic, who lost to Berdych in singles, and Lovro Zovko 6-1, 6-3, 6-4 in a comparatively quick 2 hours, 16 minutes at Porec.

The victory advanced the Czechs to their first final since their only Davis Cup triumph in 1980, when Ivan Lendl led what was Czechoslovakia.

Spain will be heavily favored in the December 4-6 final.

Meanwhile, China won both reverse singles matches in Jiaxing, Zhejiang Province, yesterday to beat Thailand 4-1 and retain its place in Group I of Asia/Oceania.

China saw off a match point in the doubles on Saturday to win and take a 2-1 lead.

In yesterday's opener, Zeng Shaoxuan beat Thailand's No.1 Danai Udomchoke 2-6, 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 6-4 to secure the tie. Gong Maoxin then defeated Kittiphong Wachiramanowong 7-5, 3-6, 6-3 in the last match.


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