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Youzhny, Davydenko put Russia up 2-0

Feb. 8, 2008 at 1:15 PM
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MOSCOW, Feb. 8 (UPI) -- Mikhail Youzhny and Nikolay Davydenko claimed victories Friday giving Russia a 2-0 lead in its best-of-five Davis Cup series against Serbia.

The Serbian team played without world No. 3 Novak Djokovic, who sat out Friday's singles match because of the flu. He is expected to play in Saturday's doubles match and Sunday's reverse singles.

Doubles specialist Nenad Zimonjic filled in for Djokovic against Youzhny, and took the first set before falling, 2-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-4, on the hard court in Moscow.

Davydenko, ranked fourth in the world, put the Russians on the verge of eliminating Serbia with an up-and-down 6-1, 1-6, 6-3, 1-6, 6-2 win over Viktor Troicki.

Djokovic and Zimonjic are expected to take the court in Saturday's must-win doubles match against the Russian team of Marat Safin and Dmitry Tursunov.

Sunday's two singles matches include the marquee pairing of Davydenko against Djokovic while Youzhny is to play Troicki.

Russia finished second to the United States in the Davis Cup finals last year after winning the title in 2006.

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