Saturday, November 28, 2015

Belgium's Goffin survives upset bid in Davis Cup final

Belgium's David Goffin, playing doubles in the
U.S. Open in September, avoided a stunning
 upset on Friday in the Davis Cup final against
 Great Britain. Photo by Paul Bauman
   David Goffin avoided a stunning upset on Friday to give host Belgium a 1-0 lead over Great Britain in the Davis Cup final.
   Andy Murray then won in straight sets to tie the best-of-five-match series on indoor clay in Ghent, Belgium, 1-1 entering today's doubles encounter.
   Great Britain seeks its first Davis Cup title in 79 years. Belgium has never won the prestigious team competition.
   Goffin defeated 20-year-old Kyle Edmund, making his Davis Cup debut, 3-6, 1-6, 6-2, 6-1, 6-0 in a virtual must-win match for Belgium. The diminutive but supremely talented Goffin, 24, overcame a two-sets-to-none deficit for the first time in his career.
   "I was a little bit worried because Kyle was playing unbelievable," Goffin, ranked No. 16 to Edmund's No. 100, told reporters. "He just had nothing to lose. He played a wonderful match. But I knew I had a chance.
   "I knew it's always tough when you are young, when you're playing your first match in Davis Cup, to play three sets like this. That's why I tried to stay calm and wait for a chance."
   Murray, ranked No. 2, defeated Ruben Bemelmans, a veteran left-hander ranked No. 108, 6-3, 6-2, 7-5. Bemelmans committed 33 unforced errors, more than twice as many as Murray.
   All of the singles players except Goffin have played, and excelled, in Northern California.
   Murray won the Aptos Challenger 10 years ago at 18 and the now-defunct SAP Open in San Jose on the ATP World Tour in 2006 and 2007.
   Edmund reached the semifinals of this year's Aptos Challenger, and Bemelmans won the doubles title there last year with Laurynas Grigelis of Lithuania.
   In today's doubles match, Murray and his older brother, Jamie, will play Kimmer Coppejans and Steve Darcis.
   Jamie Murray is ranked seventh in doubles. Coppejans won the 2012 French Open boys singles title.

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