Nalbandian won the fifth point and Argentina advances to quarterfinals
On sunday’s first match, Leonardo Mayer had a really good game but was defeated by World’s number 7 player, Robin Soderling by 7-5, 7-6 (7-5) and 7-5. The tears on the Corrientes player’s face were because of the pride of being close to give the Swede un upset.
Soderling was the onl player in which captain Thomas Enqvist could count on. So, being realistic, Sweden’s team was not that strong.
Not to underrate Argentina’s victory, that means to remain in the World Group and keep facing the best teams in the quest of the Silver Bowl. Argentina holds it’s place for ten straight years now.
David Nalbandian made his first contribution only by being there. The presence of the player from Unquillo gave the Argentine team an extra. Experience, and when the time came to show it, quality.
The second was the point won in the doubles on saturday alongside Horacio Zeballos. Point that was key to winning the series if both singles matches against Soderling were counted as lost in the first place.
And on sunday, with the series tied in 2, came the third and definitive contribution from David, always ready to be there when needed. Argentina’s captain Modesto ‘Tito’ Vazquez draw an strategy that would face Nalbandian with Andreas Vinciguerra to see who would advance to the next round. And against a lesser player, David did not fail.
Vinciguerra started the game in good form while the Argentine looked nervous and lacking rythim, but the former number 3 player in the world came back by winning the most important points to get the first and second set. The first one by 7-5 and the second by 6-3. The celebration was close.
But the Swede had other plans and backed by the fans, surprised Nalbandian and took the third set by 6-4.
David, who not so long ago was facing, and beating, the best players in the world, came back to what he was doing, showing glimpses of his tennis, and although injured, managed to win the fourth set by 6-4, sending the Argentines into raptures.
Starting with Horacio Zeballos, the whole Argentine team left the stands to embrace David and each other in celebration while the Swedes looked astonished.
Nalbandian will get all the praising, but it is to share with Leo Mayer, Zeballos, Debonis, Schwank and of course, ‘Tito’ Vazquez.
In the other series, the results were the following: Spain 4 – Switzerland 1, France 4 – Germany 1, Russia 3 – India 2, Ecuador 0 – Croatia 5, Serbia 3 – United States 1, Chile 2, Israel 0 (partial), Belgium 1 – Czech Republic 4.
Thus, the quarter-finals are: France – Spain, Russia – Argentina, Croatia – Serbia and Czech Republic against the winner of Israel-Chile.