Davis Cup final: France open 2-1 lead over Belgium after second day

France celebrate victory over Belgium

Davis Cup Final: France v Belgium
Venue: Pierre Mauroy Stadium, Lille, France Dates: 24-26 November
Coverage: Watch live on BBC Sport website and Connected TV, 13:00-20:00 (Sat) & 12:30-20:30 (Sun)

France moved within one win of the Davis Cup title as Richard Gasquet and Pierre-Hugues Herbert sealed a doubles victory over Belgium despite never having played together before.

The duo beat Ruben Bemelmans and Joris De Loore 6-1 3-6 7-6 (6-2) 6-4 to claim a 2-1 lead in the best-of-five final.

On Friday, David Goffin won his singles tie with Lucas Pouille to put visitors Belgium ahead, with Jo-Wilfried Tsonga defeating Steve Darcis to level at 1-1.

Goffin and Tsonga meet on Sunday.

Victory for France’s world number 15 Tsonga in the 12:30 GMT match would secure the country’s 10th Davis Cup title and their first since 2001.

World number seven Goffin was runner-up at the ATP Finals in London, losing in three sets to Grigor Dimitrov on Sunday.

Pouille and Darcis will play a decisive fifth match, if needed.

France captain Yannick Noah surprisingly dropped Julien Benneteau and Nicolas Mahut on Thursday and Gasquet and Herbert rewarded him in front of a 28,500 crowd at the Pierre Mauroy stadium,

“It was a difficult decision because a lot of people did not have the same vision and even people within the group did not have the same vision,” Noah said.

“Personally, it’s good for me that they won because otherwise I would have been on a hot seat.”

France Belgium
17 (won nine, lost eight) Previous finals Two (won none, lost two)
Yannick Noah Captain Johan Van Herck
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (15) Players (world ranking) David Goffin (7)
Lucas Pouille (18) Steve Darcis (76)
Richard Gasquet (31) Ruben Bemelmans (118)
Pierre-Hugues Herbert (81) Joris de Loore (276)