Davis Cup: Defending champions Spain knocked out
Defending champions Spain were knocked out of the Davis Cup as favourites Russia booked their spot in the quarter finals with a thrilling victory in Madrid.
Marcel Granollers and Feliciano Lopez needed to win their doubles decider to send Spain through at Serbia’s expense, but Aslan Karatsev and Andrey Rublev came from a set down to seal a 4-6, 6-2, 6-4 victory and top spot for Russia in Group A.
Sweden and Serbia took the two best runners-up spots and a place in the last eight by virtue of their better match win-loss records among the second placed sides throughout the group stages.
Spain needed to win the tie against Russia to progress to the last eight. The 40-year-old Lopez defied his years to beat world No.5 Rublev 2-6, 6-3, 6-4.
US Open champion Daniil Medvedev won the second singles against Pablo Carreno Busta 6-2, 7-6 (7-3).
“We were very close but it was not enough,” said Spain’s Lopez. “It is what it is and I don’t want to give excuses.”