4 Feb 2017

NZ tennis team off to poor start

9:28 am on 4 February 2017

The New Zealand tennis team are 2-nil down in their Davis Cup tie with India heading into tonight's doubles after both Finn Tearney and Rubin Statham were beaten in last night's singles clashes in Pune.

Rubin Statham

Rubin Statham Photo: Photosport

It certainly wasn't the start captain Alistair Hunt would have liked in the Asia/Oceania Group 1 round one tie.

Tearney ranked 414, faced Yuki Bhambri who currently is around 50 places better off in the world but has been as high as No.88.

Tearney was beaten 4-6 4-6 3-6 but had his chances in the match.

Hunt said Tearney had the opportunities but was unable to take them.

"It was a tough day a the office today. Finn had a few chances in his match but couldn't capitalize. He was making the difficult ones but missing the easy ones. He had a break up in the first and second sets but couldn't take advantage on it. That's just the way it is really. He probably didn't play his best, but he'll learn and will come back stronger."

The second singles had Rubin Statham against 278th Ramkumar Ramanathan who used the support of the home crowd to play some top tennis and to win 3-6 4-6 3-6.

"Ramanathan served unbelievable today and hit a lot of unreturnable serves. Rubin just couldn't get a lead in the match and couldn't get on top all day really. Hopefullyy he'll learn a lot from that and be able to come up with something on Sunday," said Hunt.

Micheal Venus pairs with Artem Sitak for New Zealand for tonight's doubles clash.

New Zealand will play either Uzbekistan away or Korea at home in the next round of Davis Cup in April.