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Davis Cup by BNP Paribas
GB vs ITA: 4 - 6 April 2014
Welcome along to our live coverage of the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas Europe/Africa Zone Group I tie between the AEGON GB Davis Cup Team and Belgium at the Braehead Arena, Glasgow.
We will be bringing you regular updates from Braehead Arena throughout the tie. Today sees the conclusion of the tie with the remaining singles rubbers. Josh Goodall takes on David Goffin from 1pm, with Dan Evans then scheduled to face Steve Darcis in the final rubber.
Keep refreshing the page to follow the action as it happens.
To get involved and have your say find us on Facebook, Twitter - @Britishtennis (#GBvBEL) or email website@LTA.org.uk.
So there it is. Our Davis Cup weekend is now over. It may not have been the result we wanted but we could not be prouder of our boys and we tip our hats off to Belgium. We hope you can join us next time. Many thanks.
GB 4-6 4-6 BEL*
So we are in this ever familiar situation where GB must break to stay afloat. Bmans suddenly has two match points before Dan can even get a look in and takes the match with a great serve.
*GB 4-6 4-5 BEL
Evo takes to the net and sees success there. We don’t like to say we told you so but . . . Dan is straight back to the net on the next point and you never guess what, he wins the point again. Some strong serveing helps him hold.
GB 4-6 3-5 BEL*
Both men battle from the back but it is Dan who earns the reward of a break point after a lovely backhand winner across the court. He nearly has it but Bmans hits some extremely sharp angles and we go back to deuce. Ruben gets himself out of trouble however and takes the game.
*GB 4-6 3-4 BEL
Confidently Dan starts taking his groundies a bit earlier and now has a strong first serve percentage. Always useful in tennis. Dan takes the game with a great serve.
GB 4-6 2-4 BEL*
An attempted drop shot at 15-15 from Bmans sees Dan take a mini lead in the game. An error from Dan in the next shot causes him to shout ‘Evo!’ but he redeems himself by coming to the net and hitting a volley winner. BEL have the game after Bmans forces the error.
*GB 4-6 2-3 BEL
Dan is looking a bit more comfortable out there now and taking a bit more time to prepare himself and as such, he keeps himself in the match.
GB 4-6 1-3 BEL*
The angles this Belgian can get with his serve are fairly impressive. Oh to be a left-handed tennis player. Both players uses an astronomical amount of slice to keep the ball in play but Dan is the king of backspin and is not outdone. A strong serve gives BEL the game.
*GB 4-6 1-2 BEL
Again it seems Dan is struggling to hold serve. Ruben ensures that every return is deep and generally pings it back with additional change. However Dan aces himself out of trouble.
GB 4-6 0-2 BEL*
Before we had even refreshed our page Bmans took that game. Great serving from the Belgian.
*GB 4-6 0-1 BEL
So Dan opens up the second set and seems to have recovered from his ‘church giggles’. Even still Ruben manages to gain a 40-0 lead and has three break points. He needs two but still breaks the Brit.
GB 4-6 BEL*
A serve is called out and it causes a lot of chuckling around the Arena. We don’t get the joke. Perhaps it was the manner in which it was called out. Even Dan has a smile on his face. Bmans however remains focussed and now has two set points. Dan saves one but not the second.
*GB 4-5 BEL
‘Let’s go Danny, let’s go!’ the crowd chant, Dan listens and delivers two aces in a row.
GB 3-5 BEL*
Dan takes his time before leaving his chair and Leon Smith has a long chat with his charge. Whatever he said it seems to be working, for the time being anyway.
*GB 2-5 BEL
Let’s take some time to look at Dan’s tennis style. He has very smooth groundies and is a demon at the net. We think to win this match he should use that backhand slice to its full effect and get into the net as much as possible. Bmans earns himself the second break point of the match and takes it.
GB 2-4 BEL*
Polite as ever Bemelmans waits for fans to return to their seats before starting, he forces the error from Dan and takes the game.
*GB 2-3 BEL
Dan hits a couple of lovely serves but struggles with the depth of some of the returns. Bmans earns himself break point and takes it after a double from Dan.
GB 2-2 BEL*
Andy Barnes: Tough for @BritishTennis @Evo151216 @joshuagoodall @colin_fleming @RoscoHutchins and captain Leon. Great effort and definite improvements
*GB 2-1 BEL
Dan is holding strong on his serve and will not let Ruben get a look in at a break. We have already today learned how deadly that can be.
GB 1-1 BEL*
Yesterday Bmans proved that he was a tricky player and Dan struggles with the lefty’s serve.
*GB 1-0 BEL
Dan is up serving first and it is a testament to his fans who are remaining in their seats. While the tie is technically over and this is a dead rubber there is no way Dan will want to lose this. He proves us right by taking the opening game.
Dan Evans and Ruben Bemelmans have joined us on court and are warming up. Bemelmans is world ranked 145 and first made his debut at Davis Cup in 2008.
So Belgium have the tie. What does this mean for GB we hear you cry! GB will remain in Euro/Africa Zone Group I for 2013. The draw for this will be done in late September.
Do stay with us though as Dan Evans is still due to step on court. There has been another change up to the Belgium line up as Ruben Bemelmans will play the final singles rubber. This time the match will be best of three sets.
GB 4-6 4-6 4-6 BEL*
Josh is first out of his chair; he knows what must be done here. Goffin tries a drop shot and the ball teeters on the net before falling back on his side. The net is most certainly homemade. BEL lead 30-15 after Josh puts a forehand wide but with a huge ‘Come on!’ we sit at 30-30. A big serve lets Goffin see match point for the first time. The Belgian hits a perfect passing shot down the line and takes the match along with the tie.
*GB 4-6 4-6 4-5 BEL
Some fab serving makes JG look a lot more confident. He has a big task ahead of him so we think it is probably best to focus on one point at a time. Some strong attacking keeps Josh in this match.
GB 4-6 4-6 3-5 BEL*
Josh tries a drop shot but it doesn’t quite make it. It was the right idea but the execution just wasn’t there. Goffin takes a 40-0 lead when Goodall makes the unforced error and then takes the game with an ace.
*GB 4-6 4-6 3-4 BEL
Goodall is some trouble now as Goffin has worked himself towards receiving two break points. Goodall fights hard but this time to no avail.
GB 4-6 4-6 3-3 BEL*
That last game was a match in itself. We have to wonder how much Goffin is kicking himself after letting those chances slip through his fingers. The tension from the last game seems to have eased and Goffin hold his serve with relative ease.
*GB 4-6 4-6 3-2 BEL
Both Captains are on their feet shouting encouragement towards their charges, this game is crucial, the last thing Josh wants is to be broken back. A nervous looking backhand evens the game to 30-30 and Goffin has break point when JG puts his forehand long. ‘Great serve!’ the Hutch shouts from the GB bench as Josh finds deuce. We move between advantage GB and deuce for a while until JG finds himself having to save a further five break points. Finally Goodall has the game when Goffin nets a forehand. Easily the longest game of the match.
GB 4-6 4-6 2-2 BEL*
Goodall has now been broken in the third game of each set, probably just a coincidence but it is slightly unnerving. Goodall must put this stat out of his mind and focus on the points at hand. It seems he has done exactly that as he earns two break points. The Goff saves one but Josh finally converts the next when the Belgian puts his backhand wide.
*GB 4-6 4-6 1-2 BEL
Goffin’s tactics have remained pretty much the same throughout this match. He will more often than not choose to hit towards Goodall’s backhand which he deems to be the weaker side. He then waits to attack if the ball drops short or he waits for the error from the Brit if that chance does not present itself and as a result the Belgian breaks the Brit in the third game of the set.
GB 4-6 4-6 1-1 BEL*
Goffin opens strongly and causes the Brit issues with his serving and levels the third set.
*GB 4-6 4-6 1-0 BEL
So GB are in a very vulnerable position now, if Belgium take this set then the tie is theirs. So far Goodall has been broken at the early stages of each set so he must focus on not allowing that to happen. As always it is easier said than done and BEL suddenly have a break point. Josh saves this with a spinney second serve and he takes the game with an ace.
Josh is back in the same situation as he was in the first set – he must break to keep his chances alive. This is why early breaks can be handy, less pressure at the key moments. Goffin now has two set points but throws away one by double faulting. However the Belgian re-groups and forces the error from the Brit and takes the set.
A premature shout from the crowd stops Goodall in his tracks and he suddenly finds himself at 30-0 down. After a forehand winner Goffin has three set points but Goodall remains collected and serves with success bringing the game to deuce. Another great serve secures the game.
Again Goffin aims his shots towards the Brit’s backhand but this time to no avail. Goffin may have been a victim of his own success here as Goodall’s backhand now looks well grooved in. However the Goff still aims the serve there, almost on every point. There is a very close line call in favour of the Belgian man and the game evens. Goodall then earns break point as Goffin struggles with a deep return, however it remains unconverted.
Panic over! The Brit is back and looks in better shape than ever as he blasts his way past the Belgian.
Goffin is still drilling Goodall’s backhand which gives a secure lead for BEL. The best JG can do is block the retun back but he does not seem to be able to take control. Josh has now quickly run off court . . . we’re not entirely sure why. We hope he comes back!
Goodall is coming to the net a wee bit more now, perhaps in an effort to shake things up? Goffin aims his groundstrokes to Goodall’s feet and causes the Brit some issues. It’s a long way down to the ground when you’re taller than six foot. Goffin receives a break point after a forehand winner down the line and BEL take the lead when JG miss-hits a groundstroke.
GB 4-6 1-1 BEL*
Goodall scraps to get a foothold on the Belgian’s serve but still does not look 100% confident with his backhand returns.
*GB 4-6 1-0 BEL
The Goff is looking for the early break here and shows it as he shouts ‘Come on!’ on the first point of the second set. He then has two break points but loses one when umpire Lucy Grant overrules a line call. Josh then hits another fantastic forehand crosscourt and takes the game to deuce. Goffin earns another break point after JG unsuccessfully storms the net but it is saved as Goodall remains calm and plays some percentage tennis. Josh takes his chances at the net once more and this time it pays off. One more big serve gives GB the game.
Find out more information about officiating and umpiring.
So Josh must break here or the first set is lost. ‘Break! Break! Break!’ the crowd shout. Goffin predominately aims his serve towards the Goodall backhand which appears to be a good tactic as JG struggles with the returns. Goffin has set point after a forehand winner and BEL take the opening set when Josh nets his forehand.
‘Let’s go Goodall, let’s go!’ the crowd chant. Goodall hits a double fault giving BEL a mini lead in the game. Big forehands form JG put things back on par and a massive serve gives him the game.
Josh is in attack mode right now and hits some very deliberate screaming forehands. Goffin fights back by moving the Brit all around the court and JG scampers to every ball before pushing one long. The Brit now has break point when the Goff hits an error but he pulls it back to deuce with a great serve. BEL have the game when JG nets a forehand.
*GB 3-4 BEL
Josh tries mixing up some shots with slice which works well, so does a fantastically placed inside out forehand. A smash sets up game point and an error from Goffin seals it.
Goffin looks strong back on serve and JG is struggling to break back. BEL keep their lead after Goffin hits an ace past Goodall.
The crowd are really getting into the Easter spirit as two fans have just entered the Arena wearing a bunny and a chicken costume. Anyway back to the tennis . . . Josh looks strong as he steps up a hits a forehand winner past ‘The Goff’ - Belgium’s answer to The Hoff? JG takes the game with an ace.
GB 1-3 BEL*
While Goffin’s serve is not as powerful as the Brit’s we found out in the dubs yesterday it is deathly accurate. Goffin proves this has he aces Josh twice in succession. The Belgian is now really drilling Josh’s backhand; clearly he believes it is the Brit’s weakest side.
*GB 1-2 BEL
Josh definitely has the biggest serve out of the pair and takes advantage when Goffin returns a ball that lands on the service line. Goffin has break point when Josh pushes a forehand long and takes the game after another forehand error.
Goffin clips the net and wins the opening point on his serve. A hand goes up in apology. The Belgian then plays some strong groundies to take the game.
Goffin won the toss but has elected to receive. Coach Brad Gilbert would always advise to receive if you did not feel fully warmed up. Is this the case? Goffin starts the game strong hitting two winners past Josh but JG pulls back straight away and we sit at deuce. Two big serves give GB the opening game.
Great atmosphere at Braehead for Team GB @DavisCup. Great to be here :) C'mon@joshuagoodall #tennis @BritishTennis Gareth Richman
Josh Goodall and David Goffin have now taken centre stage. It is an interesting turn of events now that Goffin has stepped in. Both players have been on a good run of form recently. World No.112 Goffin won an ATP Challenger event in Guadalupe last week while Goodall secured a title in Switzerland.
A big day ahead for both teams then with a place in the World Group Play-Offs at stake for the victor. Belgium must be favourites as they come into the final day with a 2-1 lead but what impact if any will the replacement of experienced Davis Cup player Rochus with the relatively untested yet in form Goffin have on the visitors?
In case you missed any of the action yesterday catch up with Colin Fleming and Ross Hutchins doubles victory to keep GB's hopes alive of winning the tie.
So the pre-match preparation has been done and the Braehead crowd begin to take their seats as we wait for the two teams to come onto court. Josh Goodall vs David Goffin coming up here, live from 1pm.
Get involved and have your say. Get in touch on Official British Tennis Facebook, Tweet @Britishtennis (#GBvBEL) or email website@LTA.org.uk.
Lots of you doing just that on twitter using our lovely #GBvBEL hash tag. Here's what some of you have had to say so far.
@BritishTennis Good Luck GB Davis Cup Team! - Jem Fleming
@BritishTennis I am going up today. First time watching live professional tennis, looking forward to it! #cmon #gb - Richard Main
@BritishTennis Going to be a very tall order for the lads but I wish both the best of luck! #GBvBEL - Luke Jones
Hello and welcome to the final day of our live updates from the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas tie between GB & Belgium.
With Belgium currently leading 2-1, GB must win both singles rubbers to claim victory. Josh Goodall begins proceedings for GB against David Goffin who has stepped up to replace Olivier Rochus who has had to withdraw due to a quad injury.
A win for Goodall will mean a thrilling decider between 21 year-old Dan Evans and world No.68 Steve Darcis.
So how do you think the singles rubbers will turn out? Let us know what you think!
And may we just wish everyone a very Happy Easter and thank you for choosing to spend it with us cheering on the GB boys!
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The AEGON GB Davis Cup Captain Leon Smith reflects on the second day and looks ahead to day three of the Davis Cup tie at Braehead Arena.
Share your thoughts about the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas @BritishTennis on twitter using #GBvBEL