France, Serbia set up Davis Cup semi-final clash

Missing Miami Open Title Defence Was Refreshing Says Novak Djokovic

World number two and 12-time grand slam victor Novak Djokovic will play in Serbia's first rubber in the Davis Cup quarter-finals tomorrow.

With Novak Djokovic back in the ranks and Spain without Rafael Nadal, it always looked as though the hosts would prevail in Belgrade.

Serbia's Viktor Troicki and captain Nenad Zimonjic combined to beat Spain's Pablo Carreno Busta and Marc Lopez 4-6 7-6 (4) 6-0 4-6 6-2.

Zimonjic earned his 30th victory for Serbia, and he has played in every doubles match since the country entered the World Group of the Davis Cup in 2004.

Djokovic won 6-3 6-4 6-2 on Friday.

Belgium, the runners-up to Great Britain in the 2015 final, made sure of their semi-final place when national number one David Goffin eased past Italian veteran Paolo Lorenzi 6-3, 6-3, 6-2 in Charleroi for a 3-1 lead.

But it didn't happen and the Serbian player won in straight sets.

France are in the semi-finals for the fifth time in eight years after Julien Benneteau and Nicolas Mahut beat British duo Jamie Murray and Dominic Inglot 7-6 (7) 5-7 7-5 7-5.


Chardy replaces Gilles Simon meaning it will be the first time since 2005 that France's self-styled "Three Musketeers" of Tsonga, Monfils and Simon have not been named in a Davis Cup line-up.

"Overall, I'm very happy with my performance and it's very encouraging because I now know I am on the right path to rediscovering my best form", Djokovic told a news conference.

Serbia, victor of Davis Cup in 2010, will on September play its fourth semifinals in eight years, in an away match against France who defeated Britain. "I'm super proud of these guys today but it still will take a monstrous effort from us on day three", said Courier.

Djokovic has dropped from his No. 1 ranking after a slump in form following his French Open title previous year.

Johnson and Sock recovered from losing the first set in Brisbane to take the lead, though they needed a decider to come out on top 3-6 6-3 6-2 2-6 6-3.

"I've been looking forward to this tie for a long time now", he said.

Nick Kyrgios finished off John Isner in a battle of the big servers with his 20th ace to win 7-5, 7-6 (5), 7-6 (5) after Jordan Thompson upset Jack Sock 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (4), 6-4.

The winners of the tie will face either France or Great Britain in the semi-finals.

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