Australia sweeps Netherlands into Davis Cup semis
AUSTRALIA is through to the 2022 Davis Cup semi-finals after overcoming Netherlands 2-0 in Malaga overnight. Kicking off the six-day Davis Cup Finals, Australia booked its spot in the semi-final after finishing second in its group, but upstaged the surprise packets of the round robin stage thanks to singles wins by Jordan Thompson and Alex de Minaur.
In both instances, the Aussie dropped the first set only to step up and win in tight circumstances against their Dutch opponent in more than two and a half hours each. Up first was Thompson, who fell a set down against Tallon Griekspoor, but was able to recover and win 4-6 7-5 6-3 in two hours and 54 minutes to give the green and gold an early advantage.
Thompson’s serve was on fire, producing 16 aces to three off a 74 per cent clip. Though Thompson was only able to win 53 per cent of his first serve points, Griekspoor really struggled, with a poor 37 per cent success rate. Neither player will look back on their second serve point efforts fondly, with less than a quarter of their points being successful. In the end, a critical couple of breaks in favour of the Australian got him home.
In the second match, de Minaur stepped out on court against Botic Van de Zandschulp in a very different looking match. Not possessing the same power as Thompson, de Minaur was a rock of consistency, but in a bizarre statline, neither player had success on serve, but also did not concede many breaks.
The Australian broke his opponent three times to one though only won 44 and 25 per cent of his own serve points. Van de Zandschulp was fortunate to only be broken three times considering he only won the 36 and 20 per cent of his points respectively.
“We’ve got a great team, a lot of belief and a lot of passion,” De Minaur said post-match. “I’m very happy to win today. Every single one of these players on our team is going to play their heart out. We’ll do everything we can for our country.”
Australia seemed to have the home crowd advantage against the Dutch, with the Spanish crowd cheering on the green and gold. Post-match, de Minaur thanked the fans for their support, sensationally declaring “We’re the Australian team but we have some Spanish blood!”
The Aussies may not have such a warm welcome in their next match however, with Spain a potential opponent. The home nation locks horns with Croatia overnight to determine which one will face the Aussies in the final four.