China complete whitewash of Taiwan

Staff writer, with agencies

Mon, Apr 08, 2013 - Page 20

China took the final two matches against Taiwan yesterday to record a 5-0 whitewash in their Davis Cup Asia/Oceania zone Group I relegation playoff in Tianjin, China.

Zhang Ze beat Chen Ti 7-6 (9/7), 6-1 and Wu Di defeated Huang Liang-chi 6-7 (5/7), 6-4, 6-1.

Zhang had beaten Yang Tsung-Hua 7-5, 6-1, 6-1 on Friday, while Wu defeated Chen 1-6, 6-0, 6-1, 6-4.

On Saturday, Gong Maoxin and Li Zhe won 6-3, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 over Huang and Yang in the doubles to give China an unassailable lead in the best-of-five tie.

In Bangalore yesterday, India completed their whitewash of Indonesia in the other Group I relegation playoff, with Somdev Devvarman beating David Susanto 6-3, 6-1 and Yuki Bhambri downing Wisnu Adi Nugroho 6-0, 6-1.

Taiwan will play Indonesia in a second-round relegation playoff in September, with the losers being relegated to Group II for next year’s competition.

Elsewhere, Tatsuma Ito was the hero as he took the decisive final match to give Japan a slim 3-2 victory over South Korea in their Group I second-round tie.

He raced to a 6-3, 6-3, 6-0 win over Cho Min-hyeok after Lim Yong-kyu had surprisingly defeated Japan’s Go Soeda 5-7, 7-6 (7/5), 6-4, 6-3 to make it 2-2.

Ito’s win means Japan qualify for a place in the playoff for the World Group in September.

Bernard Tomic downed Denis Istomin as Australia defeated Uzbekistan yesterday to also advance to the World Group playoffs.

Tomic sealed victory for Australia in their tie on clay in Namangan, Uzbekistan, with an emphatic four-set victory over Istomin to give his team an unassailable 3-1 lead.

The 20-year-old won the fourth rubber 4-6, 6-2, 6-2, 6-3 after Australia went into the final day leading 2-1.

Meanwhile, Lukas Rosol beat Evgeny Korolev 7-6 (7/5), 6-7 (2/7), 7-6 (7/5), 6-2 to give the Czech Republic an unassailable 3-1 lead over Kazakhstan and propel the defending champions into the Davis Cup semi-finals.

Rosol battled Korolev, who had replaced Kazakh No. 1 Mikhail Kukushkin for the first reverse singles, for more than three-and-a-half hours before sealing the quarter-final tie, played on clay in Astana.

The Czechs had built up a 2-0 lead after winning both of their singles matches on Friday, but the home team avoided an early exit by taking Saturday’s doubles.