NEW YORK, September 19, 2021 (Tennis South Africa Press Release)
South Africa got off to a superb start on Saturday, winning their opening singles matches in their Davis Cup by Rakuten World Group II tie against Venezuela in New York.
Playing at a neutral venue at the historic Forest Hills Stadium – the former home of the US Open – South Africa’s No. 1 Lloyd Harris flaunted his spectacular form in the opening rubber.
Harris raced to a crushing 6-0 6-0 win over Venezuela’s No. 2 player, Brandon Perez.
“I’ve never seen him (Perez) play before, so it was the first time. I wasn’t sure what to expect but I think I made life very difficult for him,” said Harris, who reached the quarter-finals at the recent US Open.
“I didn’t give him any free points and he served his games. I think he has some good strokes, he has some good shots, but I think I just played very well, very efficiently.”
Boosted by his compatriot’s dominant performance, Philip Henning went on to beat Ricardo Rodriguez in the second singles match.
Though Rodriguez put up a fight, 20-year-old Henning held on to secure a 6-4 6-4 victory.
“I really enjoyed playing today. It was a fun match,” Henning said.
“I was a bit nervous at the beginning, but after a few games I found my groove and found my rhythm. I think I played well.”
Raven Klaasen and Ruan Roelofse are set to face Luis David Martinez and Dimitri Badra in the doubles match on Sunday.
In the reverse singles matches, Harris is scheduled to meet Rodrqiguez and Henning is up against Perez.
If they win any of their three remaining matches, the South African team will advance to the Davis Cup Group I promotion playoffs.
Day 2 of the Davis Cup action will start at 17h00 (SA time) on Sunday. The action will be available on live-streaming.