10 Takeaways From Day 2 At The ATP Cup
A review of the key moments from Day 2 in Brisbane, Perth and Sydney
The first round of ATP Cup ties are complete, with each of the 24 countries up and running in Brisbane, Perth and Sydney. With the three highest-ranked players at the ATP Cup making their first appearances, a successful video review challenge and the use of Team Zone technology, Day 2 lived up to all expectations.
Here are 10 of the biggest takeaways from Day 2:
1) Night Session Stars: Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Dominic Thiem all made their ATP Cup debuts on Saturday night. Nadal and Djokovic were able to record straight-sets wins for their sides, but Thiem was beaten in three sets by Team Croatia’s Borna Coric.
2) Spain Sweeps Georgia: After Roberto Bautista Agut cruised past Aleksandre Metreveli 6-0, 6-0, World No. 1 Nadal took made his way onto court at RAC Arena for his opening match of the 2020 ATP Tour season against Nikoloz Basilashvili. After struggling to serve the match out, the World No. 1 eventually confirmed the tie victory for Spain with a hard-fought 6-3, 7-5.
3) Serbia’s Solid Start: Djokovic was forced to find his best level at Pat Rafter Arena as he recorded his ninth win in 11 ATP Head2Head encounters against Team South Africa’s Kevin Anderson. The Serbian overcame the 33-year-old 7-6(5), 7-6(6) to earn Team Serbia the victory, adding to Dusan Lajovic’s 3-6, 7-6(4), 6-3 triumph against Lloyd Harris.
4) Croatia Downs Austria: After a strong 6-7(4), 6-4, 6-4 comeback for Marin Cilic against Dennis Novak, Coric stunned World No. 4 Thiem to confirm a victory for Team Croatia against Team Austria. The two-time ATP Tour titlist played with aggression in front of a loud crowd at Ken Rosewall Arena to snap a six-match losing streak, battling past the Nitto ATP Finals runner-up for his first Top 10 victory since October 2018.
5) First Win For France: Benoit Paire and Gael Monfils began Team France’s ATP Cup title bid with singles victories against Team Chile. Paire recovered from a set down to battle past Nicolas Jarry, before Monfils confirmed victory for his nation with straight-sets success against Cristian Garin. Garin and Jarry combined to beat Nicolas Mahut and Edouard Roger-Vasselin in doubles.
6) Monfils Magic: It is fair to say Monfils is no stranger to magical moments on a tennis court. The Frenchman produced another during his win against Garin, showcasing his incredible athleticism to turn the tables on his opponent at Pat Rafter Arena.
7) Argentina Up And Running: Following Guido Pella and Hubert Hurkacz’s three-set wins, doubles took the spotlight on Ken Rosewall Arena with the score tied at 1-1 between Team Argentina and Team Poland. Maximo Gonzalez and Andres Molteni, who own a collective 13 tour-level doubles titles, claimed the win for their country with a 6-2, 6-4 victory against Hurkacz and Lukasz Kubot.
8) Video Review Success: After David Goffin proved unsuccessful with the first ATP Cup video review on Day 1, Hurkacz became the first man to successfully challenge a call with the innovative technology. The 22-year-old challenged the umpire’s decision to replay a point following a late call from a line judge. On review, his opponent Diego Schwartzman was not affected by the call which came after he missed his next shot and the point was awarded to Hurkacz.
9) Tablet Tactician: Pella was one of many ATP Cup stars to take advantage of the available technology in the Team Zone during Day 2. The Argentine watched specific points from earlier in his match on the Team Zone’s tablet device to learn from his mistakes, recovering from a second-set loss to beat Kamil Majchrzak 6-2, 2-6, 6-2.
10) Japan Dominates: Team Japan’s Go Soeda and Yoshihito Nishioka dropped a combined five games en route to establishing an unassailable 2-0 advantage against Team Uruguay. Soeda opened the show in Perth with a 6-1, 6-3 win against Martin Cuevas, while Nishioka raced past Pablo Cuevas 6-0, 6-1. Toshihide Matsui and Ben McLachlan completed the sweep of straight-sets triumphs, beating Ariel Behar and Pablo Cuevas 7-6(5), 6-4.