Facing off against two experienced doubles players, Canada was defeated in four sets 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 by the Netherlands on Saturday at Davis Cup by BNP Paribas in Toronto. Daniel Nestor and Vasek Pospisil fell to Matwe Middelkoop and Jean-Julien Rojer on day two at Coca-Cola Coliseum to cut Canada’s lead to 2-1 heading into the final day on Sunday.
The Canadians got off to a strong start, breaking their opponents in the opening game of the match and holding onto the lead to take the first set, but the Dutch duo fought back to win the next three sets. In the end, Middelkoop (no. 32 in the world) and Rojer (no. 20 in the world) broke the Canadian pair three times in eight tries while Canada only managed the one break at the start. Middelkoop and Roger were playing their first match together.
“Playing together for the first time, we had to make some adjustments after losing that first set. We went back to the basics without playing to fancy and made sure to focus on our strengths which worked well for us. I think we played some much better tennis from then on,” Middelkoop said after the match.
“The guys gave their hearts out today, but we ended up going down and that’s the nature of Davis Cup of course. I still think we are in a good position. Robin had a very long and physical match yesterday which gives us an advantage with Milos being fresh. Milos played very well on Friday so hopefully he can get a good start, get ahead and get the business done,” said Canadian team captain Frank Dancevic
Daniel Nestor, the most decorated player in Canadian tennis history, played the final match of his illustrious career on Saturday. The 46-year-old played on the ATP World Tour for nearly three decades, capturing 91 titles, including eight Grand Slam trophies, along the way. The Canadian legend will be honoured during an on-court ceremony before Sunday’s singles matches which begin at 2 p.m. E.T.
“It didn’t end the way I wanted to. But it was very special to end my career in Toronto. I was very thrilled when I first found out that this tie was going to be played here. I was really looking forward to this match, it was an important one for me. I prepared well for it but my level is just not good enough anymore,” Nestor admitted.
“It was an honor for me to be on the court with him. I really wanted to win this match for him so I was very focused on all the little details in practice all week to make sure we had the best preparation possible, but they played well and we were a bit unfortunate at times. It’s been a fun ride playing with Daniel all these years. He became one of my best friends on tour, so I will really miss him,” Pospisil explained.
Daniel Nestor’s career by the numbers
29 years on the ATP World Tour
91 titles, 8 being Grand Slam titles
1 Olympic Gold Medal
1+ title in 23 straight seasons (1994-2016)
Wins in 38 different countries and with 43 different partners
1 of only 6 players with more than 1,000 wins on the ATP
He holds many Davis Cup records for Canada
– Most wins (48)
– Most doubles wins (33)
– Most ties played (52)
– Most year played (25)