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Pouille confirmed for Sunday singles in Davis Cup final

Pouille confirmed for Sunday singles in Davis Cup final

"This is the beginning of a new stage that guarantees the pre-eminent and legitimate place the Davis Cup should have as a competition for national teams, while adapting to the demands of this professional sport at the highest level", the Barcelona defender said in a statement in August.

Pouille did not have a single break point.

After both players were dragged into a tiebreak without any break in a tense opening set, Pouille conceded 7-3 later on following his opponent's precise backhand dropshot.

Cilic wasted four set points when Pouille battled back from 0-40 down at 2-5 in the second set but with his own serve rock-solid he calmly moved into a two-set lead.

The mainly French 22,000 crowd kept roaring their support for Pouille, but it was the Croatia contingent, decked out in their distinctive red and white, who would soon be celebrating.

World number seven Cilic then made short work of an injury-hit Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who needed to take a medical timeout during the third set before succumbing 6-3, 7-5, 6-4.

The Frenchman saved two match points at 5-3 but was forced to watch when Cilic unleashed a superb lob that secured another break and the title.

The victory gives Croatia some revenge for their football team s defeat by France in the World Cup final in July.




Croatia's sports-mad President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic was among the fans at courtside to savour a landmark title. After getting his legs massaged by Croatia captain Zeljko Krajan, he briefly left the court after the seventh game for treatment but did not look hampered once he returned.

"It's not every day that you become a world champion", the 30-year-old Cilic said after his victory. "For us, it's a dream come true for this nation", said Cilic in a courtside interview.

"My singles players not only didn't lose a set, they didn't lose serve in three matches which is an unbelievable achievement and shows you the quality that we produced". "And I feel that in Croatia it's going to be incredible too".

Croatia won the 2005 final against Slovakia, and Cilic had been a part of the team that finished runner-up to Argentina in 2016.

The 2019 competition will do away with the home and away format after an opening qualification round and will culminate in an 18-nation finals week in Madrid in November.

The French tennis federation said teams will not play the final reverse singles match. A backhand wide handed Cilic a 6-5 lead and the former U.S. Open champion wrapped up the set at love on serve.

A booming forehand gave Cilic three match points as Pouille could only return it into net.

At times, Noah could have been excused for disappearing behind the very big black curtain used to cut the 50,000-seater soccer stadium in half to create a stunning tennis amphitheater.

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