Ostrava, Czech Republic (SportsNetwork.com) - Tomas Berdych played the role of
hero this weekend, winning each of his three matches to send the two-time
reigning champion Czech Republic past the Netherlands and into the Davis Cup
Berdych, following a run to the Australian Open semifinals, pounded Igor
Sjisling in the second reverse singles match Friday to give the Czechs a split
on the first day of play, then teamed with Radek Stepanek in a doubles win
The world No. 7 was first on the court Sunday in the opening reverse singles
match and outclassed Thiemo de Bakker, 6-1, 6-4, 6-3, to clinch the best-of-
five tie for the host nation.
Berdych needed just an hour and 46 minutes to wrap it up for the Czechs,
winning 93 of the 157 points played and breaking serve six times.
DeBakker was given the nod ahead of Robin Haase, who was given a rest after
winning a grueling five-set opening singles match Friday against Stepanek and
playing in Saturday's nearly four-hour doubles match. DeBakker had also beaten
Berdych last year in Bastad, but was simply no match on Sunday.
The Dutch were playing in the world group of the Davis Cup for the first time
since 2009 and haven't won a world group tie since 2005 against Switzerland.
Next up for the Czechs, now unbeaten in 10 straight Davis Cup ties, will be a
visit to Japan for an April quarterfinal. The Japanese toppled Canada this
The Sports Network