(November 17, 2013) The Czech Republic has repeated as Davis Cup champion after defeating Serbia 3-2 in Belgrade, Serbia on Sunday. In additional to titles in 2012 and this year, they also captured the crown in 1980 as Czechoslovakia.
In winning the fifth rubber to clinch the cup, Radek Stepanek became the first player in history to win consecutive live fifth singles rubbers in a Davis Cup Final. He is only the third player to win two Davis Cup Final live fifth singles rubbers, following Frenchman Henri Cochet and Great Britain’s Fred Perry.
For Czech captain Vladimir Safarik, he wins the Davis Cup title in his first tie as captain substituting for Jaroslav Navratil who was hospitalized with a blood clot.
The Serbs began day three with Novak Djokovic extending his post US Open win streak to 24 after stopping Tomas Berdych 6-4, 7-6(5), 6-2 to even the tie at 2-2.
The Serbs were at a disadvantage without the help of Janko Tipsarevic who could not play the tie due to a right heel injury. Also Viktor Troicki is off the tour due to a doping violation and ineligible to play.
Stepanek took advantage of the inexperienced Dusan Lajovic who is ranked No. 117 by demolishing him in straight sets.
“I don’t think words can describe it,” said Stepanek of the win. “To defend this trophy means the world for us and our country. We waited 32 years for the second title and now we are one of five countries that have been able to defend the title.
“We played in Serbia, on their surface, in front of their fantastic crowd. We made history today. I felt great on the court here since Friday and I just proved it. I’ve been Top 10 singles, Top 10 doubles, I’ve won two Grand Slams, and played the Masters in singles and doubles, but winning the Davis Cup tops it all.”
WORLD GROUP FINAL
CZECH REPUBLIC defeated SERBIA 3-2
Venue: Belgrade Arena, Belgrade, SRB (hard – indoors)
Novak Djokovic (SRB) d. Radek Stepanek (CZE) 75 61 64
Tomas Berdych (CZE) d. Dusan Lajovic (SRB) 63 64 63
Tomas Berdych/Radek Stepanek (CZE) d. Ilija Bozoljac/Nenad Zimonjic (SRB) 62 64 76(4)
Novak Djokovic (SRB) d. Tomas Berdych (CZE) 64 76(5) 62
Radek Stepanek (CZE) d. Dusan Lajovic (SRB) 63 61 61