Captain happy with Vijayant Malik's valiant fight

Vijayant Malik

Rookie Vijayant Malik may have failed to score a much-needed win for India against Korea in the Davis Cup tie today but non-playing captain S P Misra is not complaining.

Malik fought his heart out against Korean number one Suk-Young Jeong but lacked fitness to outlast a higher-ranked player and ended up conceding the second singles.

Misra, who is guiding the side for one last time, said maybe the occasion got to Malik.

"Probably it was pressure of Davis Cup but he played extremely well. He is young lad and fought hard. It's (cramps) not serious and he should be all right for the reverse singles," Misra told PTI.

The 70-year-old non-playing captain said it made sense to withdraw from the contest.

"He was already two sets down and I do not want to get him injured, so he conceded. There was no point continuing. We needed to protect his health for the reverse singles.

"The kind of tennis he played against Korean number one was pleasing. Had he pulled out one set, tension would have eased out," he said.

Asked about the surprisingly tame defeat of V M Ranjeet in the first singles, Misra said nothing worked for the rookie against Min Hyeok Cho.

"Long rallies suited the Korean guy (Cho). He had the upper hand. Ranjeet needed to mix it up, go up and take the lead but could not execute. There was not much to tell him since it would have added pressure on him.

"His serve did not work at all, that's why he could hold just once. He was down all the way," Misra said.

Asked if he was worried about the doubles match tomorrow, going by the way Koreans were playing, he said: "It's not going be easy but on record and reputation we should win," Misra said.

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