Unusual line-up of the decisive rubber in the Davis Cup final, consisted of two substitute players: Troicki , who replaced Tipsarevic and Llodra , who played for France instead of Simon. On paper it was actually a 50/50 match-up… They’d never played against each other in singles; Troicki was in the best period of his career & playing in front of the supportive crowd, but the more experienced Llodra belonged to a narrow group of indoor specialists with his serve-and-volley attitude. The final outcome was shocking, yet the beginning of that deciding rubber didn’t indicate it’d be a nightmare for the 30-year-old Frenchman. He had points to win games Nos 2 & 3 which he lost, so hypothetically he could have led 3:0, but instead, he trailed *1:5 totally losing confidence in his main weapon: the volley. He regrouped a bit, began the 2nd set leading *2:0 (30-all), so given the fact he had lost his serve already twice, the levelling at 1 set apiece seemed quite obvious, then it came something unimaginable though – the 1st serve deserted Llodra while Troicki’s backhand was rock-solid, and the Serbian fans enjoyed an 8-game winning streak! Llodra looked like a hypnotized man, he acted like nothing bad happened which wasn’t the case considering his poor record of winning matches from difficult positions. In the 3rd set he was broken thrice, the last time at 3:5 as Troicki passed him three times with his backhand. “This is the most intense pressure ever in my life and to win it in front of my home crowd I think is the best possible way,” Troicki said. “I’m lost for words, it’s unbelievable.” During the post-match ceremony, all members of the Serbian team shaved their heads…. Djokovic had initiated his amazing 43-match winning streak with wins over Simon & Monfils.
SERBIA d. FRANCE 3-2 at Belgrade Arena, Belgrade: Hard (indoor)
Gael Monfils (FRA) d. Janko Tipsarevic (SRB) 6-1, 7-6(4), 6-0
Novak Djokovic (SRB) d. Gilles Simon (FRA) 6-3, 6-1, 7-5
Arnaud Clement / Michael Llodra (FRA) d. Viktor Troicki / Nenad Zimonjic (SRB) 3-6, 6-7(4), 6-4, 7-5, 6-4
Novak Djokovic (SRB) d. Gael Monfils (FRA) 6-2, 6-2, 6-4
Viktor Troicki (SRB) d. Michael Llodra (FRA) 6-2, 6-2, 6-3
From left: Obradovic (captain), Zimonjic, Djokovic, Tipsarevic & Troicki
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