The New Zealand Davis Cup team have kept their hopes alive in their Asia/Oceania Group 1 clash with India in Pune after scoring a four set doubles win to make the overall score 2-1 to the home side going into the reverse singles.
The New Zealand doubles team of Michael Venus and Artem Sitak dropped the first set 3-6 but then came back strongly to defeat Indian tennis legend Leander Paes and Vishnu Vardhan 6-3 7-6(8-6) 6-3 in their match in front of a raucous crowd at the Balewadi Sports Complex.
The tie now moves into a live third day and the reverse singles to decide which nation progresses into the next round of the competition and New Zealand captain Alistair Hunt says he's looking at sticking with the same singles players, Finn Tearney and Rubin Statham who were beaten on day one.
"They (Venus and Sitak) played a great match today in front of a big noisy crowd probably a couple of thousand people with a lot of pressure on the boys. They played a good solid three sets, so really happy with the result. It took a set to settle down the crowd was just so vocal with noise between serves they played a good breaker. Leander was trying to set the record for the most Davis Cup wins ever and the crowd were going bananas so great to get the win," said Hunt who is keen to keep the faith with his singles players.
"There will be no changes at this stage (to the singles selections). Hopefully the guys are going to learn from Friday and come out after watching the win today and get inspiration. Finn will be opening up and he's got a good chance in his match. If we can get Finn across the line and then Rubin will have the match up against Yuki Bhambri and the pressure goes on India."
The reverse singles are set to start at 3pm local time in Pune with Tearney against Ramkumar Ramanathan followed by Statham taking on Yuki Bhambri.