Davis Cup: France rallies to beat Germany 3-2, advances to semifinal
NANCY, France — France rallied from a 2-0 deficit to beat Germany 3-2 in the quarterfinals of the Davis Cup on Sunday.
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga cruised past Tobias Kamke 6-3, 6-2, 6-4 to help France even the tie before Gael Monfils secured the winning point by defeating Peter Gojowczyk 6-1, 7-6 (0), 6-2.
France improved to 8-2 against Germany and will next face the Czech Republic, which routed Japan 5-0.
"This victory is logical and was expected, but we know nothing is logical in the Davis Cup," France captain Arnaud Clement told Sport Plus television. "We saw some courageous Germans who played their best tennis and even played above their usual level."
Tsonga outslugged Kamke by making 45 winners to 19 for his opponent. The Frenchman jumped to a 3-0 lead in the first set and broke Kamke twice in the second. Tsonga slapped a forehand winner to break for a 2-1 lead in the last set before clinching the victory with an ace.
In the fifth match, Monfils got off to a good start by winning the first five games. Gojowczyk saved two break points at 2-2 in the second set. However, Monfils fired three forehand winners and an ace in the tiebreaker to go two sets up.
Gojowczyk dropped serve three times in the final set as Monfils capitalized on an unforced error from the German to convert his first match point.
"I’m very proud of their reaction after those two losses on Friday that really hurt us," Clement said. "They knew they had no room for error. Playing in such conditions is very tough. But they managed to react like men."
On Friday, Kamke beat Julien Benneteau 7-6 (8), 6-3, 6-2, and Gojowczyk outlasted Tsonga 5-7, 7-6 (3), 3-6, 7-6 (8), 8-6 to give Germany a 2-0 lead.
On Saturday, Michael Llodra and Benneteau defeated Kamke and Andre Begemann 6-1, 7-6 (5), 4-6, 7-5 to cut Germany’s lead to 2-1.
"We said it last year and we said it at the beginning of this year: our goal is to win the Davis Cup," Clement said. "Reaching the semis is not enough for this ambitious group."
Germany stunned Spain 4-1 in the first round but missed its four best players for this tie: Tommy Haas, Philipp Kohlschreiber, Florian Mayer and Benjamin Becker.