Vancouver, Feb 2: Five-time Davis Cup champions Spain found itself in an unusual position after going down 0-2 in the opening match of their World Group first round match against Canada.
With the No.1-ranked Spaniards missing their top four players, including superstar Rafael Nadal and world No.4 David Ferrer, No.12-ranked Canada took advantage as their top player, Milos Raonic, won the opening match on the hard court at the University of British Columbia campus, beating Albert Ramos 6-7, 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 Friday, reports Xinhua.
Frank Dancevic capped off a strong day for the hosts who have never won a World Group tie in four attempts when he thrashed Marcel Granollers in straight sets, 6-1, 6-2, 6-2.
The 28-year-old Dancevic, currently ranked world No. 166, said he was surprised to beat the 34th ranked Granollers in straight sets. He added, despite the lead, Canada still needed another point to advance.
“The bottom line is it’s not finished yet. We’re up 2-0 but there’s a long ways to go and it’s not time to celebrate now,” he said.
“We got to go out there, focus on who we’re playing, finish the job and then we can celebrate after. These guys (Spain) are tough and they’re going to come back hard. They’re really going to dig down. It’s not going to be easy to finish them off.”
With Spain without Nadal, Ferrer, world No. 11 Nicolas Almagaro and Fernando Verdasco (No. 24) through injury or choosing to skip the tie, captain Alex Corretja had to rely on younger players in the opening singles matches who normally don’t get to play for their country.
He will rely on the veteran doubles pairing of Marc Lopez and Granollers as they face Canadians Daniel Nestor and Vasek Pospisil Saturday.
The winner of the tie will face the victor of Croatia-Italy, currently deadlocked 1-1, in the quarterfinals starting April 5.