France and Croatia to clash for Davis Cup title in Lille

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The last two Davis Cup finals have gone to a deciding rubber, first Croatia losing out to Argentina in 2016-in one of the most memorable ties of the decade-then France beating Belgium past year.

France is deep but Croatia is top heavy with No. 12 Coric and No. 7 Marin Cilic.

When the players of France and Croatia step onto the clay court laid down inside Lille's huge Stade Pierre Mauroy on Friday it will mark the end of an era for the 118-year-old Davis Cup.

This year's Davis Cup final has a familiar ring to it, at least for fans of soccer.

Tsonga said the prospect of playing in the final gave him an extra motivation to come back.

"The most important thing was to spend as much time as possible together thinking about this final", said Noah, who summoned his players for a demanding training camp in northern France about two weeks ahead of the final.

"Honestly, I was not surprised", Croatia captain Zeljko Krajan said of Noah's nominations.

To his credit, Noah's got a solid doubles team in Nicolas Mahut and Pierre-Hugues Herbert, ranked eighth, that finished runner-up at the Nitto ATP Finals last weekend.

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He missed a nine-foot putt that, as Tiger Woods notes, is going to "hurt the wallet". "My heart just can't take much more of it". Trailing by one hole on No. 17, Tiger's tee shot made it look like Phil was going to wrap up the victory a hole early.

What TV channel is the Davis Cup final on and can I live stream it? Despite a drop in individual performances, Noah's players have reached the Davis Cup semifinals every year during his most recent stint, losing only once to Croatia in 2016. While the first two ties have gone to the home team, it's a good bet that France, which has not lost a home tie in its past six, will want to close out the year on a good note with a successful title defense. "The conditions indoor clay are slightly faster than outdoor clay".

While it's too early to predict how the 106th Davis Cup Final will turn out, it's worth noting that five of the last eight Davis Cup Finals have been decided in the fifth rubber - including the 2016 Final, when Argentina recovered from 1-2 down to defeat Croatia, and a year ago, when France held off Belgium to win 3-2.

"The next one will maybe have the same name but will be something new and something we don't know but we will see what happens. During our meals, we thought about the final". Here, as soon as we woke up, we were in the final.

Croatia qualified after a 3-2 defeat of the United States, while France beat Spain by the same margin.

"I'm a little surprised Jeremy (Chardy) plays", Cilic said at the draw ceremony.

Sunday's reverse singles would see Tsonga face Coric and Chardy take on Cilic although the captains are allowed to change their teams.

The decision to omit Pouille may have surprised some, but Noah has full confidence in the world number 40 - who will meet Borna Coric in the opening rubber on Friday.

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