Qatar overpowered Cambodia in the singles to take an unbeatable 2-0 lead in a Pool B tie on the second day of the Davis Cup Asia Oceania Group III cycle at the Esteghlal International Tennis Academy in Tehran yesterday.
In a three-set battle that was spread across little more than three hours, Qatar’s most experienced Davis Cupper Mousa Shanan Zayed overturned a first-set loss to beat Cambodia’s No2 singles nomination Tan Nysan 3-6, 6-4, 6-2.
Bun Kenny carried Cambodia’s hopes of staying alive in the contest but found the going tough against Mubarak Shanan Zayid who posted a 6-3,6-4 win to guide Qatar to their second victory in as many days.
Qatar had revenge in mind when they went into this tie after Cambodia’s crushing blow last year in the relegation playoff had forced them down to Group IV. Qatar remains in Zone Group III in 2016 following a decision by the Davis Cup Committee Cambodia began the day on a bright note after Tan Nysan forced an early break and took the first set with relative comfort.
But Zayed, who has appeared in 38 ties for Qatar since his debut in 2008, the third highest in the country’s history, used his vast experience to claw his way back into the match.
Exploiting Nysan’s unforced errors and crucial double faults, Zayed kept his own winning percentage of points won on his first serve relatively high, in sharp contrast to his rival who recorded less than 50 per cent success on his first serves. Equally impressive was Zayed’s second delivery.
In the second singles, Mubarak Shanan Zayid, who won a major domestic event last month, controlled the tempo of the rallies as Kenny could not get down to his normal rhythm. Both were dogged by doubles faults yet when it came to big points it was Zayid who always showed greater enterprise.
He ended up converting six of the seven break points that came his way, while Kenny could only cash in on three of the 10 he managed to create.
Qatar’s doubles combination of Jabor Ali Mohammed Mutawa and Mousa Shanan Zayed had taken the first set at 7-5 against Long Samneang and Phalkun Mam as of press time and looked well set to ensure a Qatari clean sweep.
In another Pool B tie, Syria outplayed Singapore 3-0.