Britain's Davis Cup hopes ended by Germany
Last Updated: 30/11/21 10:27pm Great Britain's Davis Cup campaign came to an end in a tense quarter-final defeat to Germany in Innsbruck. Leon Smith's side were looking for a repeat of their victory o
British duo Joe Salisbury and Neal Skupski suffer painful doubles defeat to Kevin Krawietz and Tim Puetz as Germany book semi-final place; Leon's Smith team must win a qualifying tie in early March to book their place in next year's finals
Last Updated: 30/11/21 10:27pm
Great Britain's Davis Cup campaign came to an end in a tense quarter-final defeat to Germany in Innsbruck.
Leon Smith's side were looking for a repeat of their victory over the same opposition in the last eight two years ago and made the perfect start when Dan Evans thumped Peter Gojowczyk 6-2 6-1.
But British No 1 Cameron Norrie suffered his first defeat of the week, going down 7-6 (7-6) 3-6 6-2 to Jan-Lennard Struff, and Kevin Krawietz and Tim Puetz won a tense deciding doubles rubber 7-6 (12-10) 7-6 (7-5) against Joe Salisbury and Neal Skupski.
Norrie has had an outstanding season and the 26-year-old, who has climbed from 71 in the rankings to 12 in 2021, certainly deserves a holiday but it is only a month until the new season begins with a very similar competition in the ATP Cup, where he will again lead the British team
Norrie to lead Britain in the ATP Cup
Salisbury and Skupski recovered from a shaky start against France on Saturday to claim the crucial victory over the Czech Republic in style and send Britain through to the last eight for the sixth time in seven editions.
Krawietz and Puetz were unbeaten having got the better of Novak Djokovic and Nikola Cacic in their group win over Serbia, and they were marginally the better team in the opening set, forcing Skupski to save a set point at 5-6.
Salisbury and Skupski held a 6-4 lead in the tie-break but could not take any of their four set points and, with each point ratcheting up the tension, it was Germany who struck.
The second set followed a similar pattern but Britain looked set to force a decider when they led 5-0 in the tie-break only for Germany to win seven points in a row, sparking huge celebrations.
Germany will travel to Madrid for the semi-finals on Saturday while Britain head home and must win a qualifying tie in early March to book their place in next year's finals.