Team Europe wins thrilling third edition of Laver Cup

Published by Reuters / Tennismash

Team Europe celebrates its third straight Laver Cup victory -- this time in Geneva, Switzerland (Getty Images)
Alexander Zverev scores a thrilling win over Milos Raonic to deliver Team Europe enough points to edge Team World in Geneva — Europe’s third straight Laver Cup victory.

Alexander Zverev snatched the Laver Cup for Team Europe as he beat Canada’s Milos Raonic in the final rubber in Geneva on Sunday.

With Australia’s Nick Kyrgios and Rafa Nadal both withdrawing at the start of the day through injury and Roger Federer suffering a doubles defeat, it looked as though John McEnroe’s Team World would take the title.

But after Federer beat John Isner, Germany’s Zverev kept his cool in an electrifying atmosphere to beat Raonic 6-4 3-6 [10-4].

It gave Europe a 13-11 overall win and sparked wild celebrations with captain Bjorn Borg, Federer and Nadal racing on to the charcoal-coloured court to swamp Zverev.

“It was an unbelievable weekend,” Zverev told

“My team was screaming at me in the locker room before the match tiebreak, saying this is how I could turn my season around.

“Without all of these guys on the bench, I couldn’t have done it. This is very special, especially playing in front of those guys and having them trust me to play the last match.”

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Borg’s Europe have now won the Laver Cup title in each of the three years the team event has been staged.

“Team World came once again very close but we won the right points and had maybe a little bit of luck,” Swede Borg said.

“I’m very proud of my team, they did a hell of a job. I’m a very happy captain.”

Sunday’s final day of play begun when Team World’s doubles team of Isner and Jack Sock combined to upstage Federer and Stefanos Tsitsipas in a match tiebreak — handing Team World an 8-7 points lead.

Taylor Fritz, who replaced Kyrgios, stretched that lead to 11-7 when he beat Nadal’s replacement Dominic Thiem in the first of the singles matches.

Yet Federer and Zverev’s subsequent singles wins — match victories are worth three points on the final day of the competition — saw Team Europe reel the visitors in.

The event, sanctioned by the men’s ATP tour for the first time this year, will be staged in Boston in 2020.

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