Mikhail Youzhny and Dmitry Tursunov earned two crucial wins in the final day of Russia’s Davis Cup encounter with Brazil to keep the team among tennis’ elite for next season.
Going into Sunday, Russia was trailing 2-1, meaning they needed two wins in two matches in order to stay in the Davis Cup World Group.
The first match on Sunday appeared instrumental in Russia’s success. The Brazilians were hoping to earn the decisive point on the back of their main star, Thomaz Bellucci. However, Russian veteran Mikhail Youzhny thought otherwise.
The 29 year old snatched the crucial victory in a five-set thriller, which lasted around five hours – 2-6, 6-3, 5-7, 6-4, 14-12.
Dmitry Tursunov took up Yuzhny’s winning play and beat Ricardo Mello in four sets to make sure Russia will compete for the Davis Cup next year.
As for those who may win it already in 2011, Spain and Argentina have reached the finals, knocking out France and Serbia, respectively.
Consequently, Spanish leader Rafael Nadal won’t have to face his main nemesis, Novak Djokovic, in this year’s Davis Cup final.