Canada puts Spain on brink in Day 1

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The most dominant country in recent Davis Cup memory could be out of this year’s tournament barely 24 hours after it began.

Spain, winner of three of the last five Davis Cups, was swept in singles on Day 1 by host Canada on Friday, and now must win all three of the remaining matches to avoid being bounced in the first round.

Playing without its four highest-ranked players, Spain turned to Marcel Granollers (34th in the world rankings) and Albert Ramos (ranked 51st) on Friday, and neither could deliver at Thunderbird Sports Centre in Vancouver. Granollers fell to Frank Dancevic 6-1, 6-2, 6-2 and Ramos lost in four sets to Milos Raonic, 6-7 (5), 6-4, 6-4, 6-4. Raonic is the highest-ranked player for either side at 15th.

Rafael Nadal is still nursing a knee injury and Nicolas Almagro pulled out of the tournament with a knee injury last week. David Ferrer and Fernando Verdasco both opted out of playing.

On Saturday, Canada’s team of Daniel Nestor and Vasek Pospisil can eliminate Spain with the doubles point when they face Granollers and Marc Lopez.

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