Switzerland trail Kazakhs, Murray puts Britain on brink
By Martyn Herman
(Reuters) - Roger Federer's hopes of adding a Davis Cup winners' medal to his vast collection of silverware were hanging by a thread on Saturday after Switzerland fell 2-1 behind to Kazakhstan in their World Group quarter-final tie.
The 17-times grand slam champion teamed up with Australian Open winner Stanislas Wawrinka on Saturday but the Swiss duo were stunned by Aleksandr Nedovyesov and Andrey Golubev, losing 6-4 7-6(5) 4-6 7-6(6) in Geneva.
Britain, however, are on the brink of a first semi-final appearance in the team competition since 1981 after Wimbledon champion Andy Murray and fellow Scot Colin Fleming won their doubles against Italy in Naples to move 2-1 ahead.
In Nancy another home side, France, are in trouble against Germany although they kept their last eight clash alive on Saturday when Michael Llodra and Julien Benneteau beat rookie pair Tobias Kamke and Andre Begemann.
An injury-hit Germany side had moved 2-0 ahead on Friday with surprise wins for Peter Gojowczyk over Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Kamke over Benneteau.
Holders the Czech Republic guaranteed a semi-final against either France or Germany as they moved 3-0 ahead against a Japan side missing their top player Kei Nishikori.
Radek Stepanek and Lukas Rosol dispatched Tatsuma Ito and Yasutaka Uchiyama in straight sets in Tokyo to extend the Czechs' winning streak in the competition to 11 ties.
Federer's decision to play in this year's competition has made the Swiss top tips for the title but things have gone badly wrong against the Kazakhs and Switzerland have no margin for error in Sunday's reverse singles. Continued...