WATCH: Rajeev Ram and Austin Krajicek beat Ivan Dodig and Mate Pavic in the deciding doubles rubber to give the U.S. a 2-1 win over Croatia.

A member of the last U.S. team to win the Davis Cup in 2007, Bob Bryan's tenure as U.S. Davis Cup captain is off and running with a victory. The U.S. Davis Cup team beat hosts Croatia 2-1 in thrilling fashion in its opening round-robin match at the Davis Cup Finals thanks to the doubles prowess of two other Grand Slam champions, Rajeev Ram and Austin Krajicek.

Ram, fresh off winning his third straight US Open men's doubles title with Joe Salisbury last Friday, and Krajicek beat Krajicek's regular partner, Ivan Dodig, and Mate Pavic 7-6(5), 6-7(2), 6-2 in the clincher, in a match where neither team was broken in the first two sets. Dodig and Krajicek won Roland Garros together in June, and lost to Ram and Salisbury in the US Open semifinals.

It was the U.S.'s first-ever win against Croatia in Davis Cup, as the team had lost the five prior meetings all-time.

"This competition means everything to me," Ram said afterwards. "It was a huge goal of ours at the beginning of the year, and I'm so happy with how everyone fought. It was a pleasure to play today."

"Ivan and I are so close," Krajicek added. "It's really fun to play here, and I think we all brought a really good level today. Any time I can play for my flag and my country, it's really a special moment."


Ahead of the two-hour, 23-minute finale, the teams split the two singles matches, despite the hosts being without the services of both Borna Coric and Marin Cilic. Mackenzie McDonald beat Dino Prizmic before Borna Gojo stunned Frances Tiafoe to send the Group D tie to a winner-take-all doubles.

McDonald, who made his U.S. Davis Cup debut in February in the qualifying round, in which the U.S. beat Uzbekistan 4-0, eased to a 6-4, 6-2 win over the 2023 Roland Garros junior champion, who's now 0-4 in his young career in Davis Cup singles matches to date. But the hosts drew level on an inspired performance by Gojo, who walloped 14 aces and saved the only break point he faced in a 6-4, 7-6(6) upset of Tiafoe for his best career win by ranking.

The Wake Forest University alum came into the tie ranked a career-high No. 77 to Tiafoe's No. 11 after reaching the fourth round of the US Open out of qualifying.


The U.S. and the Netherlands are now tied at the top of Group D with a 1-0 record and 2-1 in matches played. The Americans and the Dutch will play on Thursday in a first-place showdown.

The teams who finish No. 1 and No. 2 in the group will advance to November's quarterfinals in Malaga, Spain.

"There was great energy from the bench, just a great team effort," Bryan said. "I thought the Croatians played well. It was a hell of a match and we're pumped to get through it."

In other Davis Cup action, defending champions Canada—without the services of Felix Auger-Aliassime or Denis Shapovalov—nonetheless beat Italy thanks to singles wins by Alexis Galarneau and Gabriel Diallo.

World No. 200 Galarneau, 24, beat No. 38 Lorenzo Sonego, 7-6(8), 6-4, while 21-year-old Diallo, a former star at the University of Kentucky, hit 10 aces and never faced a break point in a stunning 7-5, 6-4 win over No. 18 Lorenzo Musetti, his second career match against a Top 20 player.

The Czech Republic swept Spain, 3-0, in Valencia and Great Britain beat Australia 2-1 in Manchester on the strength of wins for Jack Draper in his Davis Cup debut, and Dan Evans.