No Djoke, Serbia edge past Norway

DESPITE missing world number one Novak Djokovic, Serbia did enough to get past its first ATP Cup opponent on the opening day of the tournament yesterday. The Serbs, led by Filip Krajinovic defeated Norway 2-1 in easily the closest tie of the day. In fact, the Group A clash was the only one of the four that had a live doubles match, with the singles going the same way in the other three matches.

Krajinovic was the hero on the night defeating lowly ranked Viktor Durasovic 6-2 7-5, before teaming up with Nikola Cacic to win in a tense doubles contest, 7-6 6-3. The doubles needed to take place after Top 10 player Casper Ruud defeated new Serbian number one Dusan Lajovic, 6-3 7-5.

In a day of one-sided contests, none were more one-sided than the Argentinian and Georgian clash of Group. Heavy favourites heading into the clash, Argentina only conceded nine games across the three matches, as they completely destroyed the lowest ranked side. The South American nation showed no mercy with Federico Delbonis and Diego Schwartzman wrapping up the tie both 6-1 6-2 against Aleksandre Metreveli and Nikoloz Basilashvili respectively. The doubles went the exact same way and Argentina breezed past its first opponent.

In the other Group D match, a surprise withdrawal from Stefanos Tsitsipas effectively sealed Greece’s fate, as Poland triumphed in both singles matches. Kamil Majchrzak got the crucial first win over Michail Pervolarakis 6-1 6-4, before Hubert Hurkacz unsurprisingly made light work of 20-year-old Aristotelis Thanos who is ranked outside the Top 1000. In an equally surprising move, Tsitsipas decided to test out his sore wrist in the doubles, teaming up with Pervolarakis to actually win in a third set tiebreak, 6-4 5-7 10-8.

Spain also triumphed easily over Chile in the other day one match. Its two Top 20 players in Roberto Bautista Agut and Pablo Carreno Busta won in straight sets over Chilean duo Cristian Garin and Alejandro Tabilo respectively. Bautista Agut completely dismantled the Top 25 ranked Garin, 6-0 6-3, while Carreno Busta had to fight a fair bit harder to dismiss Tabilo, 6-4 7-5. With the game done and dusted, Alejandro Davidovich Fokina and Pedro Martinez jumped on court in the doubles against Tomas Barrios Vera and Tabilo, to complete the clean sweep in a tight contest, 7-6 4-6 10-7.


Group A:

Serbia (2) defeated Norway (1)
Spain (3) defeated Chile (0)

Group D:

Argentina (3) defeated Georgia (0)
Poland (2) defeated Greece (1)

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