Novak Djokovic's Serbia beat Rafael Nadal's Spain 2-1 in the final of the ATP Cup in Sydney on Sunday.
It was Spain who got on the front foot in the final, as Roberto Bautista Agut was a comfortable winner over Dusan Lajovic. However, Serbia's main man Djokovic leveled the match up, as he was able to get the better of Nadal.
Doubles were needed to determine the destination of the trophy as a result and eventually it was Serbia who took the prize, with Djokovic and Viktor Troicki sealing the result.
Here are the results in full from Sunday's play in Sydney and a recap of what was an absorbing conclusion to the ATP Cup.
ATP Trophy Results
Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP) bt. Dusan Lajovic (SRB): 7-5, 6-1
Novak Djokovic (SRB) bt. Rafael Nadal (ESP): 6-2, 7-6 (4)
Novak Djokovic & Viktor Troicki (SRB) bt. Feliciano Lopez & Pablo Carreno Busta (ESP): 6-3, 6-4
While the crowd were itching to see the showdown between great rivals Djokovic and Nadal, the early game saw Bautista Agut put in a classy performance.
The Spain star has been in fine form throughout the ATP Cup, winning every singles match he has played so far. After edging a tight opening set against Lajovic, he was able to move through the gears in the second.
The ATP Tour Twitter account noted Bautista Agut has enjoyed an excellent start to his season:
It was a performance that whet the appetite for the meeting between Nadal and Djokovic, with the former searching for his first win over his rival on a hard court since 2013.
In the early stages, it looked extremely unlikely that Nadal was going to get it, as his opponent broke serve at the first opportunity and dominated the set. The Spaniard was seemingly unable to live with his opponent.
Per Tennis TV, Djokovic was finding some incredible angles as he raced into a 6-2 lead:
In the second set, Nadal was a lot more competitive, as he was able to dig his return in deeper and get Djokovic on the back foot at times.
Both men had to save break points throughout the set—Djokovic was 0-40 down at 2-3—and eventually a tiebreak was needed to separate them. George Bellshaw of Metro commented on the quality being showcased by both men late in the stanza:
Eventually, it was Djokovic who produced the better tennis in the clutch moments, as he eased away from Nadal to win the match and level up the final.
Following the game, Bet365 put Djokovic's record over the biggest players in the game into context:
Nadal was initially expected to feature in the deciding doubles match, although he opted against taking part. The Spaniard explained his reasoning, with Lopez stepping in as a replacement:
The loss of Nadal did appear to hinder Spain, as they were unable to get on top against the impressive pairing of Djokovic and Troicki.
After winning the opening set, Serbia were in total control of the contest and went on to clinch the match in straight sets, making them the first ever winners of this new competition.