Cilic tops Tiafoe, moves Croatia step closer to third Davis Cup final

France Croatia favourites to set up World Cup final repeat

While Bryan's reflex volleys were decisive throughout the match, it was Harrison's forehand return victor that sealed it on the Americans' second match point - silencing a raucous crowd featuring fans banging drums and blaring trumpets.

Earler, Cilic was given a code violation by Carlos Ramos - the umpire who was called a "thief" by Serena Williams in the US Open final - for smashing his racquet.

In one of the best and longest Davis Cup doubles matches in 2018, Mike Bryan and Ryan Harrison have played for the first time together to defeat Ivan Dodig and Mate Pavic 7-5 7-6 (6) 1-6 6-7 (5) 7-6 (5) after four hours and 43 minutes to bring the first point for the United States of America and reduce the overall deficit to 2-1 after Borna Coric and Marin Cilic sent Croatia in front on Friday.

The doubles result was welcome for a USA team that failed to win a set in the opening two singles on Friday.

Substitute Sam Querrey - who replaced Steve Johnson - had earlier given the United States hope when he brought the overall score back to 2-2 with a surprise victory over Marin Cilic.

Ten-time champions France made into the final for the second consecutive year, aiming at achieving their title defense against Croatia at home late in November.

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"I don't know", he said, adding that "it's always a little bit more nervous" to play in the Davis Cup.

Only when 40-year-old Mike Bryan and Ryan Harrison fought courageously to claw out a five-set doubles win on Saturday, were the Americans given even faint hope of contesting the last final to be staged under the traditional Davis Cup format.

Marin Cilic eased past American Frances Tiafoe 6-1, 6-3, 7-6 (7-5) to move Croatia to within one win of its third appearance in the final of the Davis Cup, tennis' premier global team competition.

"This is the most special moment of my whole life.by far", said Coric. "Afterwards I felt Sam served really well in the third and fourth sets".

Meanwhile, Spain won the final day singles matches against France to give the tie a more respectable 3-2 scoreline.

Gasquet lost to Albert Ramos-Vinolas 1-6, 6-4, 14/12, before Mahut was defeated by Marcel Granollers 6-7 (2), 6-3, 13/11.

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