TENNIS

Spain crashes out of Davis Cup in first round

German doubles pair of Kohlschreiber and Haas put result beyond doubt in Frankfurt

For the second straight year Spain, the most successful Davis Cup team in recent times with five victories since 2000, will have to fight to retain its World Group status in a September playoff after losing in the first round against Germany.

In a bitter start to life as Spain captain for Carlos Moyà, deprived of his best players for the encounter in Frankfurt, the visiting team lost both of Friday’s singles matches and surrendered the tie by losing the doubles rubber on Saturday. The 2013 World Tour Finals winning pair David Marrero and Fernando Verdasco went down 6-7, 6-7, 7-6, 3-6 to Philipp Kohlschreiber and Tommy Haas, making Sunday’s reverse singles matches irrelevant.

Spain’s playoff opponent will be drawn in April.

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