Kiwis breeze through singles
It took Dan King-Turner and Artem Sitak a combined time of just two hours and two minutes to put New Zealand 2-0 up the Davis Cup Asia-Oceania group two tie against Lebanon in Albany yesterday.
King-Turner needed just 55 minutes to beat Makael Massih 6-1 6-1 6-0, while Sitak required an extra 12 for his 6-2 6-1 6-0 victory over Karim Alayli.
Today, King-Turner and Marcus Daniell will team up to play Alayli and Ibrahim Abouchahine in the doubles, with New Zealand needing only to win that match, or one of the reverse singles rubbers tomorrow, to set up a probable second round tie against Pakistan in April.
New Zealand captain Alistair Hunt will want to wrap up the tie quickly and there was little evidence yesterday to suggest it will be anything other than a 5-0 clean sweep for the Kiwis.
Massih is a club player, who was born, raised and still lives in Sydney, and the only issue King-Turner had playing him yesterday was staying focused for each point and not getting lazy.
"I might have lost concentration there for a couple of points at the end of the second set, but all in all I was happy with the way I played and the convincing scoreline," King-Turner said.
"He looked nervous at the start, I don't know how many live singles matches he's played and my ranking of around 300 is a lot higher than he's been or even played against.
"In the Davis Cup it's always tough to play well, there's a bit of pressure there and I think he felt that today.
"Going into the tie we knew that we were the heavy favourites on paper, but at the same time we needed to get out there and get the job done nice and quickly, get the matches over and done with.
"So it's all good so far, now we'll concentrate on the doubles and hope for a 3-0 win."