Team World seal Laver Cup title

| | Vancouver
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Team World seal Laver Cup title

Tuesday, 26 September 2023 | AP | Vancouver

Team World seal Laver Cup title

Team World won a second straight Laver Cup title on Sunday as Ben Shelton and Frances Tiafoe sealed a 13-2 victory over Team Europe with a 7-6 (7/4), 7-6 (7/5) doubles win over Hubert Hurkacz and Andrey Rublev.

Team World captain John McEnroe, who had endured four straight defeats in the event that began in 2017 before seeing his side rally for victory in London last year, was thrilled to celebrate a dominant triumph that began with a four-match sweep on Friday.

"It felt unbelievable to kick their ass, baby!" McEnroe crowed. "They kicked ours many times, OK. It was a battle to the end when we won last year."

This time around, with a blend of youth and experience, McEnroe said he "felt it from the word go" against a Team Europe side that was without fourth-ranked Holger Rune of Den-mark and world number five Stefano Tsitsipas of Greece, who both withdrew from captain Bjorn Borg's side with injuries.

That left sixth-ranked Rublev and Norway's ninth-ranked Casper Ruud as Europe's top players. Ruud nabbed the visitors' only points of the three-day event with his victory over Tommy Paul on Saturday.

Europe was unable to build on that win, with Tiafoe downing Hurkacz in singles on Saturday night before Felix Auger-Aliassime and Shelton teamed up to beat Hurkacz and Gael Monfils in doubles and put Team World one win away from victory heading into the final day.

"We stepped up, and I thought all the guys played great," said McEnroe, who also had singles wins from Americans Shelton and Taylor Fritz, Canada's Auger-Aliassime and Argentina's Francisco Cerundolo. Every World Team player contributed at least a point, with Paul gaining a win alongside Tiafoe in doubles on Friday.

"This was like a special year for us," McEnroe said. "I know they're going to come back strong, but I'll take two in a row any day. And I'm starting to think is it possible three in a row, Team World?"

Auger-Aliassime, who had two key wins on the final day as Team World rallied for victory last year, was thrilled to lift the trophy in front of his home fans in Canada.

"Amazing to win on home soil with the crowd behind us," he said.

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