Andy Murray defeated Sam Querrey of the United States on Sunday night to send Great Britain through to the quarter-finals of the Davis Cup for the first time in 28 years.
Britain went into the final day in San Diego leading the US 2-1 and as hot favourites to progress given Murray’s status as by far the highest-ranked player on show.
Querrey had beaten Murray in one of their previous six meetings and took the fight to his opponent but it was not enough as the Scot triumphed 7-6, 6-7, 6-1, 6-3.
In the last eight, Britain will be on their travels again and almost certainly on clay again when they take on Italy in April.
Japan sailed into the quarter-finals for the first time with a 4-1 victory over an injury-hit Canada. They began 2-1 ahead in Tokyo and needing a solitary success in the reverse singles to progress.
They were handed victory when Canada’s Frank Dancevic retired with injury when trailing 6-2, 1-0 to Japanese No 1 Kei Nishikori.
“The pressure is always on me to win both singles matches,” said Nishikori, who won his opening match against Peter Polansky on Friday before teaming up with Yasutaka Uchiyama to claim Saturday’s doubles.
“This time I was able to help win three matches. The quarter-finals was our goal after getting back in the World Group. To do it in the first year is very rewarding.”
They will host cup holders Czech Republic in the World Group quarter-finals in April after they eased into the next round with a 3-2 win over the Netherlands.
World No 7 Tomas Berdych secured the tie with a 6-1, 6-4,6-3 win over Thiemo de Bakker, before Igor Sijsling beat Lukas Rosol in the dead rubber.
Italy advanced when Fabio Fognini overcame Argentina’s Carlos Berlocq 7-6, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4 to give them an unassailable 3-1 lead.
Russia’s Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova defeated third-seeded Sara Errani, of Italy, 3-6, 6-2, 6-3 in the final of the Paris Open.