With Canada leading 2-1 after the opening two days, world No. 37 Milos Raonic sealed victory for the visitors by easing past Daniel Garza 75 63 62 in the fourth rubber on Sunday.
Raonic, who won all three of his rubbers against Mexico, is one of the up and coming stars in the men’s game. The 20 year-old burst onto the scene in January by reaching the last 16 at the Australian Open, and followed this is up on the American hard courts with a tournament win in San Jose and a runner-up finish in Memphis.
“I know I have a lot of work to do on the clay,” said Raonic, who hopes to use this weekend as a spring board for success in upcoming clay court tournaments. “I have to put in hours. I’m going to do a full clay court season because I want to improve a lot on it. I don’t know too much of what to expect, I didn’t play at all last year on clay. So I look forward to that challenge.”
“For me there is a lot of pride behind the Davis Cup and there is a lot of pride playing for your country, especially for the growth of the sport,” he added. “It’s not just one person, it’s a whole team.” Raonic wants the team’s performances in Davis Cup to inspire the next generation of players in Canada.
With the tie decided, Peter Polansky defeated Manuel Sanchez 64 61 to complete a 4-1 win for Canada. Next up for Martin Laurendeau’s team is a trip to Ecuador in the Americas Zone Group I second round, which is also expected to be on clay.
“Ecuador’s No. 1 (Giovanni Lapentti) is considered to be better than Mexico’s No. 1, but there is not as much depth in the Ecuadorean line-up,” said Laurendeau, the Canadian captain. “You have to win three matches in the weekend and if we have the same players that we had these days, we’ll have more options and a better chance to win.”