Djokovic in groove as Serbia lead Belgium
Novak Djokovic quickly got back in the groove after his Australian Open triumph with a crushing defeat of Olivier Rochus as Serbia surged into a 2-0 lead in their Davis Cup, first round tie in Belgium yesterday.
Holders Czech Republic were locked at 1-1 after the first day against a Switzerland side minus world number two Roger Federer - Tomas Berdych levelling the tie after Lukas Rosol had been outplayed by Stanislas Wawrinka.
Germany’s hopes of beating Argentina in Buenos Aires suffered a cruel blow, however, as Philipp Kohlschreiber was forced to retire with a hamstring injury when serving for the match at 5-4 in the fifth set against Carlos Berlocq.
Less than a week after claiming a third consecutive Australian Open title by beating Andy Murray in Melbourne, world number one Djokovic quickly adapted to the indoor clay court at the Spiroudome in Charleroi to blow away Rochus 6-3 6-2 6-2.
Serbia’s Viktor Troicki battled back from two sets down to beat David Goffin in the opening rubber.
Troicki, who won the deciding rubber when Serbia beat France to win the Davis Cup for the first time in 2010, produced a gutsy display after being outplayed for two sets.
Yesterday’s match began to spin away from Goffin in the third set as Troicki clawed his way back to win 1-6 3-6 7-6 6-4 6-4.
Results: Switzerland vs Czech Rep. 1-1; Italy vs Croatia 1-1; Belgium vs Serbia 0-2; USA vs Brazil 1-0; France vs Israel 2-0; Argentina vs Germany 1-0; Kazakhstan vs Austria 2-0.