Of the eight countries that qualified for the Davis Cup final in Malaga, the Czech Republic was perhaps the most notable and a superiority it had not shown for many years. Are we facing one of the big shadow candidates?
The heading can be understood from a double variant. First of all, from the prism of nomenclature, and I don’t know when the term was “taken back from the tribe.”Czech Republic‘, although I have to admit I love it. Secondly, and more importantly, we need to talk about a historic power that seems to have awakened under the leadership of an experienced captain and a group of rabid young players. Only this combination could have achieved such a flawless performance in the group stage of the championship Davis Cup 2023 in Valencia: nine games, nine wins.
No other nation has even touched on this distinction, only them. First, they did their homework by crushing the ever-incited North Korea. The next day they confirmed that it had been no fluke by defeating Spain, for whom there was little use in enjoying their home stadium at the Pabellón de la Fuente de San Luis. Finally, when everyone was already warned of the danger, they completed the task against Novak Djokovic’s Serbia, securing complete victory and first place in Group C. In short, a complete use of their weapons by a renewed team that really want to remember times gone by.
The team couldn’t be managed better with one captain Jaroslav Navratil who has led the team since 2006. The classics of the last decade passed through their hands, the quartet consisting of Radek Stepanek, Tomas Berdych, Jiri Vesely and Lukas Rosol. The main soldiers are now no older than 23 years old and have a self-confidence that invites them to dream of something big in the medium term. We refer to its main reference Use Lehecka (21), a high-ranking partner to accompany as Tomas Machac (22) and a third trick in the making Jakub Mensik (18), about whom they have been talking about miracles for months. To complete the equation, an old fox like Adam Pavlasek (28) is also fighting for the double point. In short: With only one top 100 in singles and ranked 57th in the world in doubles, the Czech Republic has shown that not everything depends on the rankings.
NINE OUT OF NINE
So one by one – or two by two – they defeated all their opponents. The first day for the Koreans: Seongchan Hong, Soonwoo Kwon and the Nam/Song couple. On the second day of competition the Spaniards: Bernabé Zapata, Alejandro Davidovich and the duo Granollers/Davidovich. Although they were mathematically already qualified for the final in Malaga, they finally didn’t let up against Serbia and also beat Dusan Lajovic, Laslo Djere and the Djokovic/Cacic combination. Nine out of nine perfectly made series. Four sets were lost in nine games played.
“We deserved it because we played really well these days,” assumed Jiri Lehecka with all the impudence of the statements collected on the Davis Cup website itself. “We showed that we have the level necessary to beat all these guys. “Every minute on the pitch was like a statement for each of us. I think we have shown and demonstrated to the whole world that the Czech Republic is back,” threatens the first Czech sword.
“It was an incredible experience, everything you experience in the Davis Cup is multiplied,” summarized his teammate Machac, deputy commander. “We never expected so many people to watch us, even in doubles, they stayed with us throughout the qualification. There were unforgettable moments with the stands completely full. Seriously, thank you to all the Spaniards for coming. It was very nice to see that reaction even though Spain wasn’t playing. “They welcomed us every day and made us feel at home.”
The Czech, Davis Cup champions in the 1980 seasons (against Italy), 2012 (against Spain) year 2013 (against Serbia) they will aim for their fourth title in Malaga, although the main goal has already been achieved. Qualify for the Final8? Yes, that’s fine, but it goes much further than that. Czech Republic reminded the whole world that it is still there, that it has returned and that it has not forgotten to take part in the competition that gave it so much. And the best thing is that they have a wardrobe with other pieces like Vit nettle (26) o Dalibor Svrcina (20), so Navratil can even play with the chips for the next season in November.