Great Britain come back to beat Russia in Davis Cup

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Andy who? The Great Britain Davis Cup team proved they could win without Andy Murray by completing an impressive comeback against Russia. Trailing 2-0 after the first round of singles, they won the three remaining matches to give themselves a great chance of returning to the World Group. If they manage it, Murray may even deign to play again.

The British team had taken a glimmer of hope from the doubles success of Jonny Marray and Colin Fleming on the second day of the match, but the drama was saved for the final day singles. James Ward battled to a five set victory over Dimitry Tursunov the world number 80 (245 places above Ward), before Dan Evans sealed the match with a straight sets win over Evgeny Donskoy.

Ward knew history was against a comeback from 2-0 down, which Great Britain hadn’t managed since 1930, but kept his belief. "I knew about the record of 83 years," he said, "but this was a one-off, trying to stay in the tie."

Evans was something of a wild card pick for the team, his undoubted talent often undermined by an erratic attitude in the past. On this occasion he was at his best. "As soon as I hit the first ball, the nerves left me," Evans said. "On Friday I played well, so I knew I was there or thereabouts and we all deserved a bit of luck. I gave him no chances today."

The performance was enough to have British fans asking why he can’t play like that all the time. Evans put it down to the squad environment and the support he receives there, in contrast to the self-reliance required on the tour. He’s not sure if he will be back in the team for the next match in September. "What I really want to do is get up the rankings, whatever anyone writes about me."

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