The Indian team lost its Davis Cup match to Finland 1-3 after losing the doubles on final day of the clash, in spite of pulling back with a win in one of the reverse singles. India will now have to compete in the playoffs next year to keep their hopes alive for a place in the World Group I.
With Prajnesh Gunneswaran and Ramkumar Ramanathan already suffering defeats in their respective singles matches on Day 1, the Indians needed to win the doubles as well as the reverse singles to keep claim the bragging rights.
However, the pair of Rohan Bopanna and Ramkumar Ramanathan lost the doubles fixture 6-7(2) 6-7(2) to Henri Kontinen and Harri Heliovaara in one hour and 38 minutes, thus ending India’s hopes. Both the teams played on even keel in both the sets, eventually forcing each to tie-breakers, but, slip-ups from the Indians at crucial junctures, including a double fault from Ramkumar in the opening set, allowed Finland to walk away with the match.
Prajnesh Gunneswaran, however, won the reverse singles match against Patrik Niklas-Salminen 6-3, 7-5, but, it was inconsequential to the outcome of the match, while the fifth match was not played.
Veteran Rohan Bopanna, feels that Indians need to improve in the singles event, to see a change of fortune in David Cup matches. As a matter of fact, Indian players have not beaten a higher-ranked singles player for the past six years.
"Four points are from singles matches, that's where we need to focus. It's been six years that an Indian singles player has beaten a higher-ranked player in Davis Cup,” said Rohan Bopanna, after the loss to Finland.
India will now have to compete in the play-offs next year to keep their hopes alive for a place in the World Group I.