Davis Cup: Brazil beat Spain, return to World Group

Davis Cup: Brazil beat Spain, return to World Group

Brazil`s Thomaz Bellucci beat Spain`s Roberto Bautista Agut in four sets on Sunday to give Brazil a 3-1 Davis Cup victory that relegated the Spaniards from the World Group for the first time since 1996. 

It was also Spain`s first defeat on clay since Brazil beat them 15 years ago, when Gustavo Kuerten got the win that secured victory over Spain`s current captain Carlos Moya.

Moya, who did not have world number three Rafa Nadal or number seven David Ferrer available for the tie, lamented Sunday`s defeat and vowed they would not spend long in the second tier.

"I think it is not a place where Spain belongs," Moya said of the five-times champions` relegation from the top tier.

"There have been some circumstances this year that made the Spanish team be in the second division. I am sure that in two years Spain is going to be back in the World Group."

Bellucci, ranked 83 in the world, was Brazil`s top performer, winning both his matches, which included a 6-4 3-6 6-3 6-2 victory over 15th-ranked Agut in three hours in Sao Paulo on Sunday.

Cheered on by a passionate Brazilian crowd, Bellucci hit 61 winners against a shell-shocked Agut and said he had never played better.

"I think it is my greatest win," he said. "For me it was a big challenge to play at home against Spain. 

"I played my best tennis today to get this point which was very important for the team."

"During the match I think Bautista Agut wasn`t feeling so well. He was missing a lot. 

"I think he was feeling the pressure of playing against a big Brazilian crowd. I think I managed it a little bit better than him and that was the key in the match."