French pounce on Aussies for 2-0 Davis Cup lead

12:36 PM, Jan 31, 2014   |    comments
  • Share
  • Print
  • - A A A +

La Roche sur Yon, France (SportsNetwork.com) - Richard Gasquet and Jo- Wilfried Tsonga were a pair of straight-set winners Friday, as host France jumped out to a commanding 2-0 lead over Australia in a best-of-five opening- round Davis Cup affair.

The world No. 9 Gasquet grounded promising 18-year-old Aussie Nick Kyrgios 7-6 (7-3), 6-2, 6-2 before the 10th-ranked Tsonga doubled the hosts' lead by tackling 32-year-old former world No. 1 star Lleyton Hewitt 6-3, 6-2, 7-6 (7-2) on the indoor red clay at Vendespace.

The former Australian Open runner-up Tsonga is now 4-0 lifetime against the two-time Grand Slam champion Hewitt.

Saturday's doubles rubber will pit a French tandem of Julien Benneteau and Gael Monfils against an Aussie duo of Hewitt and Chris Guccione, while Sunday's reverse singles currently pit Gasquet against the 41st-ranked Hewitt and Tsonga versus Kyrgios.

The winner of this best-of-five tie will meet the Germany-Spain victor in a quarterfinal in April.

Team France is captained by Arnaud Clement, while former No. 1 Patrick Rafter guides the underdog Aussies.

Australia is 10-4 all-time versus France, but the French won their last meeting in the 2001 World Group final in Melbourne. They first met way back in 1922.

The Aussies are 28-time champions, while the French have captured the Davis Cup on nine occasions.

The Sports Network

Most Watched Videos