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De Minaur, Kokkinakis Win Davis Cup Tie For Australia Against Switzerland
Singles wins from Alex de Minaur and Thanasi Kokkinakis earned Australia victory in a Davis Cup Finals Group Stage tie against Switzerland on Saturday in Manchester. The result lifts Australia ahead of hosts Great Britain into first place in Group B.
Kokkinakis set Australia on its way with a 6-3, 7-5 win against Dominic Stricker, before De Minaur cliched the tie with a 6-4, 6-3 victory against Marc-Andrea Huesler.
Kokkinakis fired 16 aces but still faced six break points against Stricker. He was able to fight off five of those chances, while converting on three of his five break opportunities to secure a straight-sets win. De Minaur limited Huesler to just five winners off the ground and was a constant threat on return, creating 11 break points and cashing in on three of them.
If the Aussie doubles duo of Matthew Ebden and Max Purcell can defeat Huesler and Stricker in the tie's final rubber, they will seal their country's spot in the Davis Cup Final 8. With defeat in the doubles, Australia will still be in strong position to qualify but will be at risk on Sunday, when Great Britain (2-0) takes on France (1-1).
Lehecka, Mensik Maintain Czech Republic's Perfect Record
With both the Czech Republic and Serbia already qualified for the Davis Cup Final 8, the Saturday tie between the two countries determined which would advance as winners of Group C. Both were 2-0 in Valencia entering the tie.
Jakub Mensik staked the Czechs an early lead with a 6-3, 6-2 win against Dusan Lajovic, before Jiri Lehecka clinched the tie with a 7-6(7), 7-5 win against Laslo Djere.
Lehecka led 4-1 in the second set and missed out on three match points on return at 5-4 before clinching his seventh straight Davis Cup singles win.
"It's a nice number," he said of his seven-match streak. "My first Davis Cup matches were not easy. I played as an outsider all the time, I was losing a lot. Now when I can see this stat, it's just pleasing me... I will try to keep this streak going as far as I can."
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