India beats Uzbekistan in Davis Cup

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> India took an unbeatable 3-0 lead over Uzbekistan in the Davis Cup tie in Jaipur today.

Updated: February 25, 2007 10:51 IST
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India took an unbeatable 3-0 lead over Uzbekistan in the Davis Cup tie in Jaipur today. The ''Indian Express'' duo of Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupati steamrolled the young Uzbek pair of Denis Istomin and Murad Inoyatov in three easy sets in the doubles match today. Having qualified for the World Group playoffs in September, India are now just one match away from returning to the elite World Group of the Davis Cup. Indians hold sway Leander held serve at love in the opening game and the Indians broke in the second game as Istomin served four double faults. With Lee and Hesh losing just two points on serve, the first set was over in just 27 minutes. The Indians were broken just once in the match when Bhupathi dropped serve in the fourth game of the second set. But the Uzbeks made just too many errors and the serve and volley skills of the Indians were enough to derail the Uzbeks. The 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 scoreline was far closer than the one-sided nature of the contest. "It was really a very good match we played today. There wasn't much sloppiness except for one game on Mahesh's serve. I am really happy that we have come up three-love and that means we know we have won the tie," said Paes after the match. "Tomorrow we will try to make it 4-0 and then 5-0. But now we are looking forward to September for World Group playoffs," the captain added. Still no commitment But while their chemistry worked once again in the Davis Cup where they have not lost a doubles match for over seven years, the ''Indian Express'' is still not ready to roll on the international circuit. Both Lee and Hesh are still shy of any commitment to play the circuit together. "I am one who never says never. When we split the first time, people wrote us off but we came back and won another Grand Slam. Then we split again and people wrote us off but we came back and won in Toronto last year and had a good run at the Olympics. Lets see what the future has in store," said Bhupathi. Meanwhile, the Uzbeks will play Inayatov instead of Istomin in the reverse singles and it will be interesting to see if Harsh Mankad also gets a chance on Sunday. Despite their off court differences, Leander and Mahesh's vintage tennis on the court, gave the Uzbeks no chance here. And as the Indian camp here savours their victory, tennis buffs and experts are now looking forward to India's return to the World Group in Davis Cup.

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