The Davis Cup 2016 Final kicked-off on Friday between the mighty Croatian and the strong Argentines. And there has been no lack of action right from the very beginning. At the moment it is nicely poised with the rest of the 3 matches yet to be played at Arena Zagreb, Croatia. Argentina have drawn level after Croatia had taken an early lead which makes it all the more interesting.
The Davis Cup 2016 Final started off with Marin Cilic winning the first encounter between the two nations in front of the home crowd who roared Cilic to victory in the first match. He beat his Argentine opponent in a massive five-setter which took a long time to complete. In the end, Cilic maintained his composure to clinch the opening encounter with a scoreline of 6-3 7-5 3-6 1-6 6-2. Federico Delbonis almost staged a miraculous comeback having dropped the first two sets, but failed to do so as experienced customer Cilic grabbed the initiative in the final set to give Croatia a winning start.
However, the lead did not last long as the ATP Comeback Player of the year 2016 Juan Martin del Potro won his match against Ivo Karlovic with a scoreline of 6-4 6-7 (6-8) 6-3 7-5. del Potro made a good start in the second which was kind of a must –win game for the Argentines but a second set win for Karlovic made things more interesting. In the end, del Potro did manage to win the match and bring back parity in the overall scoreline which now stands at 1-1.
After winning the game in the Davis Cup 2016 Final, del Potro confessed that he was feeling nervous after losing the set but managed in the end to grab the all-important win. He has been quoted saying, “I was nervous after I lost the second set, in the end, I had to take the longer road to victory.” He added, “The atmosphere was fantastic. Our fans were great, but the Croatian fans were brilliant too and showed us a lot of respect. It was an exhausting match, but I think I will be OK for the rest of the weekend.”
With the five-legged Davis Cup 2016 Final being locked at 1-1, tensions are bound to rise when both teams lock horns yet again on Saturday. Argentina and Croatia are scheduled to play their doubles encounter on Saturday following which there will be return singles match on Sunday. Saturday will see Ivan Dodig & Franko Skugor from Croatia taking on Leonardo Mayer & Guido Pella from Argentina. A lot will depend on this encounter as a win in this match will see one team going on to the final day with a crucial 2-1 lead.
As it stands, it is going to be fascinating when Croatia will face Argentina for the doubles time on Saturday. They will have their home crowd cheering for them and backing them which might just turn out to be a crucial factor in the outcome of the Davis Cup 2016 Final. Argentina, on the other hand, will not run out of numbers when it comes to the support from the crowd. In fact, they will have the legendary Diego Maradona cheering them to triumph for the first time in the Davis Cup.