Czechs outlast Swiss in longest Davis Cup match

4:43 PM, Feb 2, 2013   |    comments
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Geneva, Switzerland (Sports Network) - It took more than seven hours, but the Czech Republic moved to within a victory of advancing to the Davis Cup quarterfinals after the doubles team of Tomas Berdych and Lukas Rosol outlasted the Swiss duo of Stanislas Wawrinka and Marco Chiudinelli in a five- set thriller on Saturday.

Berdych and Rosol went the distance, and then some, in claiming a 6-4, 5-7, 6-4, 6-7 (3-7), 24-22 triumph. The match went two minutes beyond seven hours and eclipsed the old Davis Cup record of 6 hours and 22 minutes, set when American John McEnroe beat Sweden's Mats Wilander in 1982.

The old doubles mark was 6 hours and 20 minutes, set when Argentina's David Nalbandian and Lucas Arnold beat the Russian tandem of Yevgeny Kafelnikov and Marat Safin in 2002.

The 2012 Davis Cup champion Czechs now own a 2-1 lead in the best-of-five tie and can advance with one victory in Sunday's reverse singles action.

Berdych and Wawrinka are currently scheduled to play the opener on Sunday, but both were winners on Friday and were also part of Saturday's marathon. Rosol is also slated for the second singles rubber Sunday against Henri Laaksonen.

Options for the Czechs include Ivo Minar and Jiri Vesely, who were originally slated to play Saturday's doubles. Minar is ranked 192nd in singles, while Vesely is 272nd. Michael Lammer, ranked 357th in singles, could play for the Swiss on Sunday.

Switzerland is without the legendary Roger Federer, as the 17-time Grand Slam champion opted against playing for his nation this time around.

The Czechs and Swiss have split two all-time Davis Cup matchups, with the Czechs winning their last tie six years ago in Prague.

The Czech Republic-Switzerland winner will meet the Austria-Kazakhstan victor in April.

The Sports Network

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