Murray Brothers Force Japan to Play Defense in Saturday Davis Cup Doubles
Glenys Furness and Steen Kirby, Tennis Atlantic
A fresh Andy Murray gave team GB an edge in the Saturday doubles tie, and they took advantage, as Andy and his brother Jamie Murray defeated the young Japanese pairing of Yasutaka Uchiyama and Yoshihito Nishioka in the Saturday Davis Cup doubles tie 6-3 6-2 6-4 in just under 2 hours.
The experienced Murray pairing was comfortable from the start, with a raucous Birmingham crowd behind them. Uchiyama/Nishioka held their mettle until 3-4 serving in the opening set, where they were broken, and lost the next game to surrender the opening set. The Murray boys then took firm control of the match momentum, striking quickly to break in the opening game of set 2 on their second break point chance, and holding serve from there, adding another break along the way to take the second set 6-2.
The Japanese pairing gathered themselves and played tough in the third set, but they couldn’t generate any break point chances against the British pairing the entire match, and the third set was no different. Under intense pressure in their final two service games of the match, they were finally broken for 5-4, and the British pairing would serve the match out at love in the next game for 6-4.
The win was the fourth in a row for Andy and Jamie in Davis Cup play, dating back to last year The Murray brothers are likely to end up representing team GB in Men’s doubles at the Rio Olympic games. Doubles specialist Dominic Inglot ended up being held in reserve, but GB captain Leon Smith said that didn’t bother him, stating in the post-match press conference.
“As usual it was professional, the decision on the doubles has been talked about in the team before the tie and all the rest of the weekend. Dom knows the situation and understands it. He respects both Andy and Jamie (both ranked #2) and respects the decision. Dom always prepares as if he will be playing and came out and practiced this morning with the team.”
Today it will be Andy Murray against Kei Nishikori with a possibility of clinching the tie. If needed, Dan Evans will go up opposite Taro Daniel. Murray and Nishikori both posted wins on Friday without dropping a set, though Evans put up a tougher fight than Daniel. Japan would have to pull off a shock to end up winning the tie.