Sports

France, Croatia reach Davis Cup semis, Nadal keeps Spain alive

France, Croatia reach Davis Cup semis, Nadal keeps Spain alive

"Of course, it's a positive thing to win in straight sets", said Nadal, 31, who has not lost a singles match in the Davis Cup since his 2004 debut and in doubles since 2005.

The victory for the world No 1 in the Plaza de Toros bullring levelled the tie after world No 4 Alexander Zverev beat 33rd-ranked David Ferrer 6-4, 6-2, 6-2. "I'm very happy with my level, the first set was fantastic in such an important match".

Spain and Germany's tie was the only to go the distance, largely due to the surprising doubles win for Jan-Lennard Struff and Tim Puetz over Feliciano Lopez and Mark Lopez. "I feel comfortable back on the clay", Nadal said on the Davis Cup website. "Coming back from injuries is always hard, but it's great to be in front of my crowd on a very memorable day".

John Isner, fresh from his triumph in Miami, will line up for the United States at home to Belgium while Croatia, with Wimbledon runner-up Marin Cilic in their ranks, face Kazakhstan in Varazdin.

World number 11 Pouille, who had beaten Andreas Seppi in five sets on Friday, came from behind to see off Fognini 2-6, 6-1, 7-6 (7/3), 6-3 and send Yannick Noah's France into the semis for the third time in four years.

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Caravans like this one are common as an attempt to raise awareness, but they exist apart from the regular flow of migrants. He has also threatened to reduce USA aid to Honduras, the home country of numerous marchers.

The situation appeared even bleaker for the Americans in the second set when they fell 15-40 down while serving at 5-5, but this time Sock staved off two break points and the hosts won the ensuing tiebreaker and never looked back.

On Saturday, France's Nicolas Mahut and Pierre-Hugues Herbert will face Fognini and Simone Bolelli in the doubles.

The world number three had already cruised past Dimitry Popko in straight sets on Friday, and Sunday's win wrapped up a 3-1 last-eight success for the hosts. The tie will now be decided by the fifth and final rubber, as David Ferrer takes on World No. 34 Philipp Kohlschreiber.

Elsewhere, defending champions France booked a home semi-final against Spain as Lucas Pouille claimed a hard-fought win over Fabio Fognini in Genoa to give the visitors a 3-1 victory in the tie.

Ivan Dodig and Nikola Mektic overcame Kazakhstan's Timur Khabibulin and Aleksandr Nedovyesov 6-7 (2) 6-4 6-4 6-2 to hand Croatia a 2-1 lead.


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