Serbia and defending champions the Czech Republic booked their berths in the Davis Cup finals after defeating Canada and Argentina, respectively, in the tournament semifinals.
Serbia progressed in front of a passionate partisan crowd with Janko Tipsarevic defeating Vasek Pospisil 7-6, 6-2, 7-6 in the deciding rubber to secure a come-from-behind victory.
The Serbs had been down 2:1 coming into the final day after losing the doubles rubber and Tipsarevic losing a marathon five-set clash to Milos Raonic.
Novak Djokovic pulled Serbia level with a 7-6, 6-2, 6-2 straight sets victory over Raonic, to set up a nail-biting decider between Tipsarevic and Pospisil in a winner-takes-all rubber. Tipsarevic prevailed, defeating Pospisil 7-6, 6-2, 7-6 to clinch a place in the finals for Serbia.
The Czech Republic also prevailed 3:2, but it was a less bumpy ride as they built up an unassailable 3:0 lead that assured them of a finals place before the final day. The Czech victory was built on the exploits of Radek Stepanek and Tomas Berdych. The pair won both their singles matches and teamed up in the doubles to clinch victory. The Czechs lost both dead rubbers as they fielded second string players.
They now travel to Belgrade for the final, hosted from 15-17 November 2013. It is the third time in four years that they have faced Serbia in Davis Cup competition.
World Group Playoffs:
Spain 5:0 Ukraine
Netherlands 5:0 Austria
Croatia 1:4 Great Britain
Switzerland 4:1 Ecuador
Germany 4:1 Brazil
Poland 1:4 Australia
Belgium 3:2 Israel
Japan 3:2 Colombia
Cover Photo: elPadawan (Creative Commons License)