Guadeloupe, March 5, 2016 – The Canadian Davis Cup team was defeated 3-0 in their Davis Cup by BNP Paribas World Group first round tie on Saturday after dropping the doubles rubber to France at the Vélodrome Amédée Detraux in Guadeloupe. Richard Gasquet and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga clinched the tie for France by defeating the Canadian duo of Vasek Pospisil (Vancouver) and Philip Bester (Vancouver) 7-6(4), 6-1, 7-6(4).
After Pospisil and Frank Dancevic dropped the opening singles matches on Friday, the doubles point was a must-win for Canada. The match opened with the teams swapping service breaks before both pairs settled into a groove. Bester, playing in his first Davis Cup match since 2011, was particularly excellent, executing returns with power and volleying extremely solid at the net. At 5-4 in the first set, the French team saved four set points which turned out to be the chance Canada needed to take advantage of, as the set ended up in a tiebreak that was captured by Gasquet and Tsonga.
The French then jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the second after breaking Bester’s service game at love and then saving two break points in the following game to consolidate it. It was tough to recover from there for the Canadians, who won just 13 points in the entire second set.
Pospisil and Bester seemed to regroup for the third but again, missed opportunities were the difference as they failed to convert four more break points at 3-2 bringing the total in the match to 1 for 11 on break chances. The third set went to another tiebreak, and again it went the way of the French with some excellent returning from Gasquet to give France the win.
With the victory, France now moves on to the quarter-finals to face either Germany or the Czech Republic in July. Canada will now have to play a World Group play-off tie in September to try and keep their spot in the upper echelon of the competition. Canada’s opponent and the choice of ground for that tie will be determined in July after the final round of zonal ties are played.
Davis Cup by BNP Paribas is the largest annual international team competition in sport. A total of 135 nations are participating in 2016 and only the top 16 countries each year qualify for the World Group and play for the prestigious Davis Cup trophy.
“I knew going into the match I had to enjoy myself and play well. When called on to play for your country you want to give 150%. I felt I belonged out there and especially on the mental side I felt I was good at handling my nerves. I think we were the better team in the first and third sets and just couldn’t capitalize. But credit to them, they played well when it mattered. It’s not about having good personal performances it’s about finding ways to win and we didn’t do that today.”
- Philip Bester on his performance in his first Davis Cup match since 2011
- Vasek Pospisil commenting on the loss
- Richard Gasquet on the turning point of the doubles match
- Captain Martin Laurendeau on what’s next for Canada at Davis Cup
- French captain Yannick Noah on his team’s victory
DAY THREE AT A GLANCE
Play will resume on Sunday at 11 a.m. AST with the reverse singles matches scheduled to pit Pospisil against Monfils followed by Dancevic vs Simon. As the tie has already been decided, the matches will be played as best-of-three set matches. The team captains have until one hour before the match to change their nominations.
POSPISIL VS. MONFILS – Monfils leads their head-to-head 2-0 in Tour level matches. The two match-ups were in a dead rubber during the 2012 Davis Cup by BNP Paribas first round tie in Vancouver and the second round of the 2013 Shanghai Masters 1000 event.
|25 years old||29 years old|
|World No. 44||World No. 17|
|Career-high of world No. 25 (January 2014)||Career-high of world No. 7
|12th Davis Cup tie||13th Davis Cup tie|
|12-12 in Davis Cup play||12-2 in Davis Cup play|
DANCEVIC VS. SIMON – Simon leads their head-to-head 1-0 in Tour level matches with their only match-up coming at the 2009 Rogers Cup presented by National Bank in Montreal.
|31 years old||31 years old|
|World No. 245||World No. 19|
|Career-high of world No. 65
|Career-high of world No. 6
|23rd Davis Cup tie||11th Davis Cup tie|
|16-21 in Davis Cup play||7-10 in Davis Cup play|
Davis Cup by BNP Paribas – First Round
Canada vs. France
March 4-6, 2016
Vélodrome Amédée Detraux
France Wins 3-0
|Friday March 4||First Singles Rubber||Monfils d. Dancevic 6-3, 6-1, 6-3|
|Friday March 4||Second Singles Rubber||Simon d. Pospisil 7-5, 6-3, 6-3|
|Saturday March 5||Doubles Rubber||Gasquet/Tsonga d. Pospisil/Bester
7-6(4), 6-1, 76(4)
|Sunday March 6||Third Singles Rubber||Pospisil vs. Monfils|
|Sunday March 6||Fourth Singles Rubber||Dancevic vs. Simon|