Davis Cup: Great Britain level with United States at 1-1 in opening group tie

Davis Cup: Great Britain level with United States at 1-1 in opening group tie

Great Britain are the only nation to have competed in every edition of the Davis Cup since 1900
Group stage venues: Bologna, Glasgow, Hamburg and Valencia Dates: September 13-18
Coverage: Live TV coverage of Great Britain’s matches on BBC iPlayer and the BBC Sport website and app, with selected live text commentaries and match reports on the website and app

Cameron Norrie shook off a below-par start to beat Taylor Fritz and bring Great Britain level with the United States in their Davis Cup group opener.

Norrie had been out of spells for much of the match until taking control of a second-set tie-break and riding the momentum to win 2-6 7-6 (7-2) 7-5.

The British number one had needed to win to keep GB in the best-of-three-tie after Dan Evans lost to Tommy Paul.

Andy Murray will partner Joe Salisbury in Wednesday’s decisive doubles rubber.

They will take on Salisbury’s regular doubles partner Rajeev Ram – with whom he won the US Open last week – and Jack Sock.

A minute’s silence was held at the start of the tie in Glasgow following the death of Queen Elizabeth II and the British players are wearing black armbands or ribbons for their three Group D ties this week.

This is the first of three group ties that Great Britain will part in this week in Glasgow, with fixtures against the Netherlands coming up on Friday and against Kazakhstan on Sunday.

Each nation plays two singles matches and one doubles against their group opponents in a best-of-three sets format.

There are three other cities hosting groups this week as 16 nations chase spots in November’s finals in Malaga. The top two from each group will qualify.

I owe it all to crowd – Norrie

Having seen Evans beaten in a high-quality encounter with Paul, British number one Norrie took to the court knowing he needed a victory to keep Great Britain in the tie.

But the world number eight quickly found himself a double break down at 5-1 as the first set ran away from him as he paid the price for 12 unforced errors to his opponent’s four.

An early break in the second enabled Norrie to go 3-0 up but he then gifted Fritz a break with a wild forehand.

With music not being played at the arena as a mark of respect during the national period of mourning, it was up to fans to generate the atmosphere that could fire up Norrie.

And they did.

The football-style chants and the drums played their part and the Briton then raised his own decibels with a roar as he fended off a break point to hold for 6-5.

The tenacious Fritz forced a tie-break but Norrie by now was finding some of the form that has lifted him up the rankings and he took command.

He capitalized on a Fritz double fault and unleashed an overhead winner to bring up three set points, converting the first when the American netted.

Norrie broke in the ninth game of the deciding set, but failed to serve out victory as he sent a long backhand. But he did not make the same mistake at the second time of asking as Fritz went long to send the crowd to their feet.

“Honestly, I owe it all to the crowd. You guys were amazing,” said Norrie, whose dad David is from Glasgow and was in the stands watching.

“I wasn’t really playing my best, Taylor came out firing. I managed to get to a second set tie-break, I played well in the tie-break and then the third set as well.

“I loved the atmosphere. It’s just great to be back in Glasgow and to play a match like that in front of you guys.”

Evans also fed off the crowd in his match, which was a high-quality match that was as close a contest as their world rankings suggested it would be, with the Briton ranked just four places higher than his American opponent Paul at 25th in the world .

After eventually succumbing on the fourth set point to lose the opening set, Evans lifted his level in the second set.

Evans improved his serving levels in the second set – having won just 45% of first-serve points in the first he increased that to 89% in the second – and did not face a break point as he took the match into a deciding third set with a serve that Paul could only return wide.

The Briton went a break down in the third goal fought back immediately and, while he saved two match points in the final game, he handed over victory on the third when he netted a backhand.

“There was nothing wrong with my tennis today,” Evans said. “Well, there was everything right with it. I just didn’t take my chances I think.”

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