Somdev, Yuki beat hapless opponents

Somdev Devvarman and Yuki Bhambri used their heavy artillery to complete the formalities in the reverse singles and author a 5-0 win for India against Indonesia in the Asia-Oceania Davis Cup Group 1 relegation playoff here yesterday.

Somdev Devvarman
Somdev Devvarman returns to David Agung Susanto at Bangalore’s KSLTA stadium yesterday. Pic/AFP

Devvarman, 28, who is ranked 208, blasted David Agung Susanto 6-3, 6-1, while 20-year-old Bhambri followed it up with an even more comfortable 6-0, 6-1 win over Wisnu Adi Nugroho to allow Shiv Prakash Misra to sign off as team captain in a happy frame of mind.

The two reverse singles, that were only of academic interest after India took an unbeatable 3-0 lead on Saturday, dished out mediocre tennis with the Indonesian players offering only weak resistance.

There was a whiff of a contest in the first reverse singles with Susanto staying with Devvarman early on before dropping serve in the sixth game. The rallies were long and well-fought, but the Indian’s superiority was evident as he found some good angles to come through.

In the second set, an early break in the third game put Devvarman up 3-1, but Susanto fought hard and even had two break points in the fifth. However, the Indian came up with two well-directed serves to catch up and went on to hold for 3-1.

Thereafter, Devvarman who took to the court for the reverse singles instead of Sanam Singh who was earlier scheduled to play, broke again in the fifth and seventh to wrap up the tie in quick time while providing India a 4-0 lead.

Later, Bhambri, ranked 279, had it easy against Nugroho (1774) who was broken thrice in each of the two sets as the Indian put in a solid performance to record his second win in the tie following his success in the second singles.

“I was more relaxed and just wanted to finish off the match,” said Bhambri who then asked the crowd to give an ovation to Misra for “his services to the country”. 

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