Spain began their Davis Cup title defence in the best possible way at the Palacio de los Sportades in Oviedo today with both Nicolás Almagro and Juan Carlos Ferrero winning their opening singles rubbers against Kazakhstan.
Competing in his first Davis Cup tie since the 2011 quarter-finals against France, Almagro, the Spanish No.1 in the absence of Rafael Nadal and David Ferrer, saw off a valiant effort from Andrey Golubev, the Kazakh No.2, battling through the first two sets, before cruising through the second two to win 6-3, 4-6, 6-1, 6-1 in 2 hours and 23 minutes.
“I’m very happy with my tennis today, I think I played my best tennis in Davis Cup” Almagro said. “Now we need one more point, so we see what happen tomorrow in the doubles."
Earlier, Juan Carlos Ferrero made an extraordinary return to Davis Cup with a thrilling five-set opening win over Mikhail Kukushkin, 6-1, 4-6, 7-6(2), 4-6, 6-4, in four hours and 28 minutes.
“These kind of matches are very tough, since the beginning I think I start playing very well, in the second set it was very important to him, he get into the rhythm, so I thought it could be easier, but at the end I had to fight until the end, and it was a great match,” Ferrero said.
Marc López and Marcel Granollers will face Yuriy Schukin and Evgeny Korolev in tomorrow’s doubles rubber.