Czech Davis Cup team in Prague on Monday, December 7, 2009
The Czech Republic have been beaten in the final of the Davis Cup by defending champions Spain. The Czechs last won the competition in 1980, when they were still part of Czechoslovakia, and there was great anticipation ahead of the tie in Barcelona, with many describing it as the biggest event of the year in Czech sport.
Things started brightly on Friday, when Tomáš Berdych performed well against Rafael Nadal in the first set of the opening singles rubber. However, the Spanish star took that set and it was pretty much all downhill from there from the Czech perspective. Radek Štěpánek went two sets up against David Ferrer, before losing in five sets.
Tomas Berdych and Lukas Dlouhy
That result left the Czechs with a mountain to climb in the best-of-five series, and whatever hope remained was extinguished on Saturday, when Feliciano Lopez and Fernando Verdasco beat Berdych and Štěpánek in straight sets to give the Spaniards an unassailable lead. On Sunday Czech coach Jaroslav Navrátil fielded Jan Hájek and Lukáš Dlouhý in place of his top two players; both were defeated, meaning the final result was 5:0 to Spain.