May 23, 2013
Argentina says goodbye to Davis Cup dreams
Tomas Berdych defeated Carlos Berlocq in three sets to put the Czech Republic into the Davis Cup final against Spain.
Berdych had few problems with Berlocq, winning 6-3, 6-3, 6-4 to give the Czechs an insurmountable 3-1 lead in the semifinal. Berlocq filled in for Juan Martin del Potro, who missed the decisive reverse singles with a left wrist injury.
The Czechs return to the final for the second time in four seasons and will host it in November. They will have a chance to avenge the 2009 final defeat to Spain.
Del Potro, the 2009 US Open champion, defeated Radek Stepanek on Friday but was ruled out for Sunday by the Argentina team doctor, who said the match made his injury worse. Del Potro has a history of wrist injuries.
World number eight Del Potro almost withdrew from the semi-final at Parque Roca earlier this week due to pain in his left wrist.
"Juan Martin will not be in tomorrow's first singles against Tomas Berdych and he will be replaced by Carlos Berlocq," captain Martin Jaite told a news conference.
Del Potro opened up for Argentina with a three-set victory over Radek Stepanek on Friday before world number six Berdych overcame Juan Monaco in five sets to level the tie at 1-1.
Berdych and Stepanek then teamed up on Saturday to win the doubles 6-3 6-4 6-3 against Berlocq and Eduardo Schwank.
"Juan Martin finished yesterday's match in quite a bit more pain than the previous days. He's not in condition to play," said Argentina team doctor Miguel Khoury.
"He will not move his wrist for 10 days. That's the best decision for Juan Martin and the team."
Former U.S. Open champion Del Potro, who missed most of the 2010 season after having surgery on his right wrist, was advised to take two weeks rest by his doctor but decided to make himself available to Jaite on Wednesday.
He said on Friday he had decided to play because of huge support from Argentine fans.