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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Russians Gracious in Defeat

Russia's tennis world was licking its wounds on Monday after Pete Sampras demolished its Davis Cup hopes.

"We must congratulate the U.S. team for a deserved victory. They are worthy of it," Sports Minister Shamil Tarpishchev said in comments published by Itar-Tass.

Yevgeny Kafelnikov, who lost to Sampras in straight sets as the crowd sighed in exasperation, must have wanted to slide quietly away.

He said before the Cup that it could be Russia's one and only chance to win with a slow clay court in their favor.

But Tarpishchev praised the Russian team, which lost the final to Sweden in Moscow last year, saying: "Their presence at the second final in a row is a significant achievement."

Russian team captain Anatoly Lepyoshin was philosophical in defeat, telling the fiercely partisan crowd: "I hope the third time we'll crack it and win the cup."