The South Americans will host the second round series in April
Showing a great tennis, according with the expectations, Argentina easily defeated the German team 5-0 for the first round of 2003 Davis Cup edition. The Europeans offered little resistance to the Argentine team, which played at a great level in singles as well as in doubles.
David Nalbandian, positioned 9th in the ATP ranking, and Gaston Gaudio, 22, made the difference on Friday by winning their respective matches against Lars Burgsmuller and the Australian Open finalist Rainer Schuettler. In the doubles, the Germans did the battle and almost win the game after obtaining the second and third sets by a great margin. However, the Argentineans came up and swept the tie 6-1 and 6-2.
Although the tie had already been decided on Saturday afternoon, when David Nalbandian and Lucas Arnold established an unassailable 3-0 lead in the doubles rubber, the two “dead” singles rubbers today were nonetheless strongly contested in front of yet another packed arena.
The Argentine team played some top-quality tennis throughout the tie and a delighted Gustavo Luza, team captain, predicted more wins for his country in the ties to follow.
Looking forward to the next round, where Argentina will face Russia in Argentina, Luza was confident of victory no matter who the opponent: “I feel very confident about the next round. I believe in my players. I believe in our performance. "We are very strong here (in Buenos Aires) because of the clay and this noisy crowd. Whoever comes here will have to be very strong to beat us.”
After winning the fourth point, Juan Ignacio Chela, said that he wanted to play against Russia as the Argentine team is seeking revenge after the team led by Kafelnikov and Safin let them out of the finals last year in Moscow. "It will be different in Buenos Aires. WE are very much stronger here", said Chela to the local television.
Argentina expects to repeat its excellent performance next April against Russia. The clay and the noisy crowd will be a hard boat to raw for the experienced team led by Evgueni Kafelnikov.
Photo (ITF): The Argentine team celebrates the 5-0 victory over Germany,