By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Sunday November 28, 2021
A first Davis Cup win for Frances Tiafoe was a small consolation for Team USA on Sunday as they fell to Colombia (2-1) and finished their Davis Cup Finals campaign with an 0-2 record.
That small consolation came thanks to Tiafoe’s gigantic effort. Last week the American was on vacation and thinking that his season was over when he got the call last week that he would need to replace Taylor Fritz in the lineup.
The American didn’t hesitate to answer the bell.
“Felt extremely good. Never won a Davis Cup match before,” Tiafoe said after defeating Nicolas Mejia, 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(7), saving two match points in the process. “Last tie I played in 2018, lost both, lost in the fifth rubber. Borna was super emotional, so I know how it feels on the other side. Still had somewhat of a chance to get through. It’s not looking like it now, but, yeah, I just really wanted to win. Just in general for Davis Cup win and for everybody, I’m already out here. I was on vacation before this. I wasn’t supposed to play. I came out here, I’m going to give it my all. Yeah, it was emotional, but in the end I’m happy I got a win for everybody and I put myself on the line for the country.”
American Captain Mardy Fish was disappointed that his team would not leave Turin with a win, but proud and satisfied to see Tiafoe raise his game for the stars and stripes.
Big Foe gets @usta up and running 💪#DavisCupFinals #byRakuten | @FTiafoe pic.twitter.com/6aTkp81DyR
— Davis Cup (@DavisCup) November 28, 2021
“It was great, great to have him,” he said. “I didn’t realize he hadn’t won a singles, he was 0-2. So I saw that before the match. Yeah, it’s great to have Frances’s energy, his smile. It’s infectious on the team, and I was certainly proud to sit there and watch him compete.”
Tiafoe had lost his only two Davis Cup singles rubbers back in 2018, to Marin Cilic and Borna Coric, as the Croatians defeated Team USA 3-2 in the World Group Semifinals.
Tiafoe didn’t have much time to pull himself out of vacation mode – which made his victory all the more impressive.
He says the got the call last Saturday and cancelled his Thanksgiving plans immediately.