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India concede 0-1 lead to Czechs after Yuki’s tame defeat

New Delhi, Sep 18; Lukas Rosol blunted Yuki Bhambri’s challenge in straight sets as Czech Republic took a 1-0 lead in the Davis Cup World Group play-off tie here on Friday.

World number 85 Rosol stamped his class as he thrashed 125th ranked Yuki 6-2 6-1 7-5 in one hour and 55 minutes at R K Khanna Tennis stadium here.

The temperature was 31 degree Celsius at the start of the match but neither the conditions nor the game of Yuki proved challenging for the tall Czech, who was ranked as high as 26 last year.

Rosol served extremely well and hit flat and furious groundstrokes, imposing himself on Yuki. The Czech player played smartly and served in the range of 200km per hour and sometimes more than that, firing as many as 11 aces in the match.

Yuki put up some resistance in the third set but could not utilise the chances, squandering as many as five break points in the 10th game.

The Czech, who beat Rafael Nadal in 2012 Wimbledon second round, fired five service winners in that game alone after ebbing down 0-40, showing his cool temperament under pressure.

Rosol hit 50 winners to 21 of Yuki and made for his six double faults with his huge game.

The only time Yuki could trouble the Czech was when he engaged his opponent in long rallies but those were very few as Rosol blunted Yuki’s challenge with ease.

India’s number two player Somdev Devvarman, ranked 164, plays Czech number one Jiri Vesley, ranked 40, in the second singles. Somdev has not lost a singles match on the Centre Court here and the fans who have turned up to watch India fight would hope that he maintains his impeccable record.