For the first time in its five-year history, the Laver Cup it hosts in Switzerland is flying away from Europe
There was not the best possible end to Roger Federer’s career. The Swiss, who said goodbye to professional tennis with Rafael Nadal on Friday, was unable to celebrate a title this Sunday either. The ‘El Mundo’ team, led by John McEnroe, won the Laver Cup for the first time (13-8) thanks to an impeccable final day.
The ‘villains’ of the last weekend of Federer’s career provided the surprise after four editions as runners-up. In Prague, Chicago, Geneva and Boston, sites of the first four editions of the Laver, Europe always triumphed, with some embarrassing victories like last year when they beat their rivals 14-1, a devastating result.
Europe went into the final day of play with a comfortable 8-4 lead on Saturday, thanks to a fantastic Novak Djokovic, having to win two of four games to secure the title.
Matteo Berrettini and Andy Murray started the day with everything in their favor to exit the championship on a board and set up a set against Felix Auger-Aliassime and Jack Sock, but the Canadian and American turned the score around to bring in a 4 – 2 against in the super play-off to tighten the Laver.
The pressure was on Djokovic who was spectacular on Saturday, with a crushing win in singles and also strong in doubles. There was no reason to think of a fall for the Serb, who also started with a break in favor against Auger-Aliassime.
The Canadian, with a bombardment of winning shots (he linked to 39) and with a serve that fired 13 aces, gradually ate Djokovic’s grounds and took advantage of some problems in the Serb’s right wrist to tip the match in his favor. .
“I’ve been having problems with my right wrist for the last four or five days. It got worse with yesterday’s games. I don’t want to do Auger-Aliassime credit, he played a spectacular game,” Djokovic said at a press conference later.
The Canadian took the game 6-3 and 7-6 (3) and put Europe on edge. There were still two games to go and Bjorn Borg’s men had to win them both. And Stefanos Tsitsipas came out with the intention of achieving it. The Greek hit thirteen winners in the first set and seemed to have everything under control against Frances Tiafoe.
But the American responded. He took a very close second set, saving four match points in the tiebreak, and forced a ten-point tiebreak in which Tsitsipas’ nerves ended the competition. The Greek was unable to contain his emotions, he ate a snack from 2-8 and it was Tiafoe who ended up wrapped on the cement of the O2 in London.
Source: La Verdad