(Reuters) - The United State surged to an unbeatable 3-0 lead to eliminate 2010 champions Serbia in the first round of the Davis Cup on Saturday.
Joining Serbia at the exit were 2014 winners Switzerland, who were also overwhelmed 3-0 by Kazakhstan after failing to mount much of a challenge in the absence of 20-times grand slam champion Roger Federer.
Holding a 2-0 lead after Friday’s singles, Americans Ryan Harrison and Steve Johnson came from a set down to beat Nikola Milojevic and Miljan Zekic 6-7(3) 6-2 7-5 6-4 in front of a partisan Serbian crowd.
Holders France need one more victory on Sunday to progress to the quarter-finals after Pierre Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut earned them a 2-1 lead over the Netherlands following a 7-6(6) 6-3 6-7(3) 7-6(2) victory over Robin Haase and Jean-Julien Rojer in almost 3-1/2 hours in Albertville.
Belgium, finalists last year, slipped up against Hungary after winning both of Friday’s singles matches. Attila Balazs and Marton Fucsovics kept Hungary’s chances alive with a 6-3 6-4 6-7(2) 4-6 7-5 win over Ruben Bemelmans and Joris De Loore in Liege.
Croatia mounted a superb comeback in their tie against Canada, with world number three Marin Cilic and Ivan Dodlig roaring back from two sets down to eke out a 2-6 3-6 6-4 7-5 6-2 win over Daniel Nestor and Vasek Pospisil for a 2-1 lead.
The Spanish pairing of Feliciano Lopez and Pablo Carreno Busta comfortably beat Britain’s Jamie Murray and Dominic Inglot 6-4 6-4 7-6(4) to give them a 2-1 lead.
Italy grabbed a 2-1 advantage over Japan, while Germany also stood one win away from a last eight place after beating Australia in the doubles.
Kazakhstan became the first team to reach the quarter-finals after Timur Khabibulin and Aleksandr Nedovyesov secured a 6-4 6-4 3-6 6-7(5) 6-3 win over Marc-Andrea Huesler and Luca Margaroli.
Reporting by Philip O'Connor in Stockholm, editing by Pritha Sarkar