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Davis Cup Final 2013: Day 3 Scores and Results for Serbia vs. Czech Republic

BELGRADE, SERBIA - NOVEMBER 17: Radek Stepanek of Czech Republic plays a backhand during the men's singles match between Dusan Lajovic of Serbia and TRadek Stepanek of Czech Republic on day three of the Davis Cup World Group Final between Serbia and Czech Republic at Kombank Arena on November 17, 2013 in Belgrade, Serbia. (Photo by Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images)
Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images
Patrick ClarkeCorrespondent INovember 17, 2013

For the second straight year, Radek Stepanek played the role of hero for the Czech Republic, beating Serbia's Dusan Lajovic in Sunday's decisive rubber in Belgrade to power his country to its second consecutive Davis Cup title and third overall.  

Stepanek won in straight sets to lock up a 3-2 win for the Czechs, who became the first team since Spain in 2008 to win the Davis Cup away from home.

Novak Djokovic did his best to lead Serbia to its second Davis Cup crown in three yearsbeating Tomas Berdych convincingly in Day 3's first rubberbut his two victories weren't enough. The Czechs were ultimately able to capitalize on his absence from Saturday's doubles match.

With all five rubbers in the books, let's get you up to speed on how it all unfolded.

Day 3 Scores
Rubber No. 4Score
(SRB) Novak Djokovic def. (CZE) Tomas Berdych6-4, 7-6 (7-5), 6-2
Rubber No. 5Score
(CZE) Radek Stepanek def. (SRB) Dusan Lajovic6-3, 6-1, 6-1
DavisCup.com

 

Radek Stepanek Delivers Another Clutch Performance

BELGRADE, SERBIA - NOVEMBER 17: Radek Stepanek of Czech Republic plays a forehand during the men's singles match between Dusan Lajovic of Serbia and Radek Stepanek of Czech Republic during day three of the Davis Cup World Group Final between Serbia and Cz
Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images

One year after beating Spain's Nicolas Almagro in four sets in the decisive rubber at the 2012 Davis Cup final in Prague, veteran Radek Stepanek lifted his country to the top of the tennis world once again.

The 34-year-old was absolutely dominant on Sunday, making it clear from the outset that he wouldn't be denied. After taking a one-set-to-love lead, Stepanek appeared to break Lajovic's will in the second frame, running away with it 6-1.

The final set would feature more of the same as Stepanek maintained his poise and took advantage of countless errors from Lajovic.

While the victory adds to Stepanek's growing legacy as one of the all-time clutch Davis Cup performers, the straight-sets loss means that Lajovic failed to win a single set in this year's final. The 23-year-old will certainly be disappointed with his overall performance, but there's no doubt he'll benefit from the experience gained from taking part in such a massive occasion.

 

Novak Djokovic Keeps Serbia Alive with Straight-Sets Win

BELGRADE, SERBIA - NOVEMBER 17: Novak Djokovic of Serbia celebrates the victory during the men's singles match between Novak Djokovic of Serbia and Tomas Berdych of Czech Republic on day three of the Davis Cup World Group Final between Serbia and Czech Re
Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images

World No. 2 Novak Djokovic did his best Superman impression for Serbia on Day 3, routing Tomas Berdych in straight sets in the day's opening rubber to extend his winning streak to 24 matches and preserve his side's chances.

Aside from a dramatic second-set tiebreak, the match was routine for Djokovic, who broke Berdych on his fourth set point in the opening set and cruised in the final set after picking up an early break.

The crowd was a significant factor as Nole gave them plenty to cheer about throughout.

To be fair, Berdych was playing for the third straight day, having participated in the Czech Republic's pivotal doubles victory on Saturday. Still, there's no faulting Djokovic for Serbia's unsatisfying performance in Belgrade.  

Despite having to settle for second place, Djokovic and Serbia are sure to be in contention for the Davis Cup once again in 2014.

 

Follow Bleacher Report Featured Columnist Patrick Clarke on Twitter. 

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