The first-day of the Davis Cup Group I playoff between Pakistan and Lithuania ended with both countries sharing the days honors at 1-1 at Pakistan Sports Complex, Islamabad.
Pakistan tennis’ stalwart Aqeel Khan gave the hosts an auspicious start by beating Lithuania’s Laurynas Grigelis in the opening singles match by the scores of 7-6, 3-6, 6-3 in one hour, 47 minutes.
However, the visitors struck back in the next singles match when Ricardas Berankis defeated Mohammad Shoaib in another three-setter by the scores of 6-4, 6-7, 6-4 in two hours and 23 minutes.
On the second day of their tie, Pakistan’s Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi and Mohammad Abid will take on Berankis and Grigelis.
The doubles game will be followed by reverse singles matches between Aqeel and Berankis and Shoaib and Grigelis.
Pakistan hosted Japan in the World Group I First Round last year at the same venue losing 4-0.
Pakistan’s best Davis Cup performance came in 2005 when they reached the World Group play-offs.
Often referred to as the World Cup of tennis, Davis Cup is run by the International Tennis Federation (ITF) and is contested annually between teams from competing countries in a knock-out format.
The most successful countries in the history of the tournament is the United States (winning 32 titles and finishing as runners-up 29 times).