Mardy Fish and John Isner defeated Colombia’s Robert Farah and Carlos Salamanca 6-4, 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-3 to give the United States a 2-1 lead in their Davis Cup World Group playoff Saturday.
Fish is slated to play Santiago Giraldo in Sunday’s reverse singles on the outdoor red-clay court and Sam Querrey will take on Alejandro Falla.
Fish could make a bit of history on Sunday. The last American to win three times in a tie was Pete Sampras in the 1995 final in Moscow.
Asked if he would be tired, Fish replied: “Not at all. This is what we train for. That’s why we got here early.”
The winner of the tie will remain in the World Group.
The United States has dropped out only once since the World Group began in 1981. The Americans have won the Davis Cup a record 32 times, the last in 2007.
Colombia is trying to reach the World Group for the first time and was hoping to take advantage of the thin air in Bogota, which is 8,700 feet above sea level.
U.S. captain Patrick McEnroe, who retires after this tie, initially announced he would play Ryan Harrison with Isner in doubles, but shifted to the more experienced Fish, even though he played a four-hour singles Friday in beating Falla.
“I think everyone is going to feel good since everyone has had one match out there,” McEnroe said. “We will see who is feeling good in the morning. It is good to have a lot of options.”
Colombia kept itself in the match by winning the third set. The South Americans led 3-0 but then failed to convert two set points at 6-5 and went into a tiebreaker, where they raced to 6-2 and held on to win 7-5.
Fish and Isner stepped up in the fourth set, surged to a 4-1 lead and then relied on Fish to serve out for the win in just under 3 hours.