David Ferrer admits he is “very, very tired” after a gruelling season, but the world No 5 summoned the energy to deliver one of the finest performances of his career here last night and put Spain on the brink of victory over Argentina in the Davis Cup final.
After Rafael Nadal had overwhelmed Juan Monaco 6-1, 6-1, 6-2 in the opening rubber, Ferrer showed extraordinary resilience to come from behind to beat Juan Martin del Potro 6-2, 6-7, 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 after four hours and 43 minutes. Del Potro appeared to be in command when he won the second and third sets, but the indefatigable Ferrer dug deep to play some stunning tennis and take the home team into the second day with a 2-0 lead.
Spain, who had never won the 111-year-old competition until 2000, could secure their fifth title in the last 12 years in today's doubles, in which Fernando Verdasco and Feliciano Lopez are due to face David Nalbandian and Eduardo Schwank. Even if the Argentines pull off an unlikely victory, they would still have to win both of tomorrow's reverse singles.