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Last Updated: Saturday, 5 March, 2005, 14:45 GMT
GB pair take stunning doubles win
ISRAEL 1-2 GREAT BRITAIN
Jeremy Bates, David Sherwood and Andrew Murray
TV COVERAGE
Sunday: BBCi, 1100 GMT
Davis Cup debutants Andrew Murray and David Sherwood produced a remarkable performance to give Great Britain a 2-1 lead over Israel in Tel Aviv.

Murray, 17, became Britain's youngest ever Davis Cup player in a 6-4 7-6 (7-5) 2-6 7-6 (7-5) win over Jonathan Erlich and Andy Ram.

GB captain Jeremy Bates had resisted the temptation to draft in Greg Rusedski for the crucial doubles.

Britain must now win one of Sunday's two singles rubbers to clinch the tie.

Bates was vindicated for a brave doubles decision and, with Rusedski a heavy favourite to beat Israel's number one Noam Okun in the fourth rubber, his side are in a strong position.

"The point is we've got to look to the future, and I wanted to keep Greg fresh for the reverse singles on Sunday," Bates told BBC Sport afterwards.

I've never been involved in a match like that, either on or off the court
Jeremy Bates,
GB captain

"We're now in a position of strength."

Both Murray and the 24-year-old Sherwood were making their Davis Cup debuts against an experienced pair with world-class pedigree.

"I've never been involved in a match like that, either on or off the court," admitted Bates.

"In terms of my Davis Cup experiences, it beats them all. For two guys making their Davis Cup debuts they were inspirational doubles players out there."

With Rusedski on the sidelines the attention was firmly on Murray, and he did not disappoint.

SCHEDULE
Sunday:*
Okun v Rusedski
Levy v Bogdanovic
* Line-ups can be changed

The Scot's first shot in Davis Cup tennis was a blistering return and he proved the most impressive player on show in the early stages, firing four first serves on his way to confidently closing out the set.

Sherwood was playing his part as the Britons twice went a break up in the second set but they could not convert and looked in trouble at 4-1 down in the tie-break.

However, a storming response from both Murray and Sherwood stunned the home crowd and the Scot was particularly fired up as they moved two sets clear.

After the drama of the tie-break the Britons fell flat in the third and it quickly slipped away.

The fourth looked to be heading in the same direction but Bates' men dug deep to twice break back, the second when facing three set points at 0-40 when 5-6 down.

That proved the final blow for a demoralised Erlich and Ram as the British pair swept throught the tie-break for a spectacular win.

And Murray then admitted that both he and Sherwood would like to play the decisive fifth rubber on Sunday should Rusedski slip up.

"If it goes down to the wire I'd love to play, as would any of the guys," said the Scot, "but I think David deserves the spot having played so well today."




WATCH AND LISTEN
Davis Cup highlights: Israel v GB day two


Interview: Andrew Murray and David Sherwood



SEE ALSO
GB players warned over security
28 Feb 05 |  Tennis
Davis Cup - Israel profiles
01 Mar 05 |  Tennis


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