Davis Cup: Germany, Czech Republic tied 1-1 on opening day

Berlin, March 5 (IANS) Philipp Kohlschreiber overpowered Lukas Rosol in five sets before Thomas Berdych equalized with a hard earned five-set victory over youngster Alexander Zverev, at the Davis Cup first-round encounter in Hannover.

Germany’s No. 1 Philipp Kohlschreiber grabbed the opener for the hosts on Friday after clinching a five-set (3-6, 6-3, 6-4, 2-6, 6-3) in 2 hours 57 minutes against Lukas Rosol. It is Kohlschreiber’s fifth win in six clashes with Rosol, reports Xinhua.

Rosol caught a bright start on the road and in front of 4500 spectators as the Czech wrapped the first set 6-3 thanks to 13 winners, and 13 unforced errors by Kohlschreiber.

The German grabbed a foothold into the second set and secured a break at 4-3 to level in sets following 6-3. Kohlschreiber gained momentum and sealed the third set 6-4 before Rosol fought back in the fourth (6-2) to force the World’s No. 30 into the decider.

Philipp Kohlschreiber put the victory beyond doubt after a break at 4-3 to pull away 6-3 for the 1-0 lead against Czech Republic.

The Czech Republic tied the game 1-1 in the second game of the opening day, as Czech Thomas Berdych overcame resilient Alexander Zverev in five sets (6-7, 6-1, 6-4, 6-7, 4-6) after 4 hours 20 minutes.

The 18-year-old German debutant gave Berdych a hard time but for all that the World’s No. 7 secured the first set in the tiebreak (6-8) after 69 minutes. Zverev remained unimpressed and bounced back after winning the second and third set (6-1, 6-4).

Berdych proved his skills and experience as he responded with two straight sets (7-6, 6-4). Especially Berdych’s faultless serve in the fourth as well as in the fifth set wrapped the Czech’s 49th victory in the teams’ competition.

“It was a tough match against a great player. Germany can be proud to have Alexander in their team. It is a tough loss for him but I see a bright future ahead of him. It was difficult for me but I fought till the end and it paid out,” Berdych said.

Germany face top-ranked Czech Republic for the team’s doubles on Saturday before two singles conclude the first round on Sunday.

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