Tennis star Alexander Zverev, who had an injured foot, couldn't keep his seat either. With the 25-year-old as a spectator, the German Davis Cup team won against France for the first time since 1938 - after the doubles it was 2-1.
First, Jan-Lennard Struff won in a match worth seeing against Benjamin Bonzi. Oscar Otte then lost the second game, but in doubles Tim Pütz and Kevin Krawietz scored 6:2, 3:6, 7:6 (7:1) against Nicolas Mahut and Arthur Rinderknech for the success cheered on by the Hamburg audience. "84 years is a long time not to win. It was very happy in the end," said team captain Michael Kohlmann.
A strong sign for the competition
Otte had missed the chance of an early victory for the German Davis Cup team in the opening game of the group phase. The 29-year-old lost to Adrian Mannarino 4: 6 and 3: 6.
Jan-Lennard Struff had put the German in the lead at the start. Born in Warsteiner, he defeated Bonzi 6: 4, 2: 6, 7: 5 after defending against two match points. "It was a crazy match with lots of ups and downs. For me, the biggest thing is to win for Germany and get a 1-0 lead here," said the 32-year-old after the 2:14 hour match. "Maybe it was the home advantage that decided here today."
With strong volleys and good positional play, the Sauerland native won the first set against Bonzi. After a period of weakness, he came back into the game in the third set. There he wrestled world No. 53 with great fighting spirit and took the overall deserved success. Zverev followed the start of the German team from the spectator area.