France was eliminated by Great Britain (2-1) in the Davis Cup group stage, this Sunday in Manchester, after a decisive double lost by Nicolas Mahut and Edouard Roger-Vasselin, despite four balls match.
France drowned this Sunday in the regrets of a cruel elimination in the Davis Cup against Great Britain, favorite pushed by a tide of supporters and qualified for the quarter-finals at the end of the suspense, after three contested matches and undecided. In Manchester, Sébastien Grosjean’s team qualified for the quarter-finals, unprecedented for them since 2018, before losing in the decisive doubles, despite a great start and four wasted match points in the third set. ..
Edouard Roger-Vasselin and Nicolas Mahut completed the first round with authority, giving a glimpse of a bright blue sky in the noisy AO Arena, which was almost full with more than 13,000 spectators, a British record in the event. But the racquet blows of the incandescent Dan Evans, always quick to harangue the crowd, and the doubles specialist Neal Skupski, winner at Wimbledon this summer, ended up triumphing after two suffocating decisive games (1-6, 7-6 , 7-6) and two hours and forty-eight minutes of bitter combat.
The French can emerge stunned from this Sunday full of twists and turns, where regrets and bursts of hope were intertwined. It began in the frustration of the first single lost 3-6, 6-3, 6-4, against Daniel Evans (27th in the world) by a 19-year-old novice, Arthur Fils (44th in the world), yet long ahead, serene and diligent. before unscrewing from the middle of the second sleeve.
Humbert will have been impeccable
The throw in place of Adrian Mannarino, weakened by adductor discomfort, initially looked like a winning bet: the rookie seemed to control the game, his emotions and his opponent, although better ranked, more experienced at 33 years old , and crowned with a newly acquired title in Washington, also on hard court. But the scenario reversed in the middle of the second set. “He put some energy into it, and with the public and the new balls, it was going a little too fast,” commented the Fancilian, a newcomer in the Top 50 in the ATP rankings.
In this context, Ugo Humbert (36th in the world) worked wonders against Cameron Norrie (17th in the world), whom he subdued with composure in three sets 7-6, 3-6, 7-5, won at the end of the suspense after two hours and forty-six minutes. “It’s huge, so many emotions, I went through all the states during the match, it’s completely crazy,” savored the 25-year-old left-hander at the microphone of BeIN Sports. He overcame “a big slack” in the second round and the “crazy noise” coming from the stands, “it was a huge thrill”.
The oldest Roger-Vasselin (39 years old) and Mahut (41 years old), so close to qualification, unfortunately did not manage to prolong the celebration. The rest of the Davis Cup will be written without them, but with Great Britain, reigning champion Canada, outgoing finalist Australia or even Serbia of world No.1 Novak Djokovic.
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