Tipsarevic pulls Serbs even with Czechs

April 6, 2012 at 4:54 PM
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PRAGUE, Czech Republic, April 6 (UPI) -- Janko Tipsarevic claimed a five-set victory Friday that allowed Serbia to tie the Czech Republic 1-1 in their best-of-five Davis Cup quarterfinal.

Tipsarevic held off Radek Stepanek 5-7, 6-4, 6-4, 4-6, 9-7 in a match that took more than 5 hours. Tomas Berdych had given the Czechs the early lead with a 6-2, 6-1, 6-2 romp past Viktor Troicki.

Stepanek had good chances to give the Czech a second point Friday, but he was unable to finish off the three match point chances he had. He also hampered himself with 100 unforced errors -- more than half the points Tipsarevic won.

Tipsarevic rallied from 15-40 down at 6-7 of the fifth set and converted his second break point of the next game for his seventh break of the day. He held at 15 for the match.

Berdych had 44 winners and didn't drop serve in his win. He converted 7-of-12 break opportunities and won 54 percent of the points off Troicki's serve.

The series turns to doubles Saturday with Serbs Ilija Bozoljac and Nenad Zimonjic to take on Czechs Frantisek Cermak and Lukas Rosol.

The quarterfinal will be decided, however, in Sunday's reverse singles when Berdych opens against Tipsarevic before Stepanek is scheduled to go against Troicki.

The Serbia-Czech Republic winner earns a semifinal slot against either Argentina or Croatia Sept. 14-16.

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