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Argentina's Davis Cup champions return home

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Buenos Aires, Nov 30 (IANS) Argentina's Davis Cup team has returned home after winning for the first time the most coveted international team event of tennis.

"This is something that's historic, something you dream about and someting unthinkable. Winning the Davis Cup on the road, winning all the matches that we played as visitors, I don't know if another team could do it in history," Juan Martin del Potro said in a press conference on Tuesday.

"We're still having trouble getting a grip on it and understanding what we've achieved," he added, reports Efe.

Argentina, four-time Davis Cup finalists, finally won the title this year, defeating Croatia 3-2 in Zagreb.

"As time passes, we'll become more aware of this great historic achievement for Argentine tennis, which has importance at the world level. Everyone wanted Argentina to win the Davis Cup for the first time. Finally, after so many lost finals, we have the cup at home today," Del Potro said.

Argentina lost in the Davis Cup final to the US in 1981 and Russia in 2006, and came up short against Spain in 2008 and 2011.

Argentine Davis Cup captain Daniel Orsanic said the win was due to the performances of the players, who achieved "extraordinary results".

"Del Potro, in addition to being a crack player, has huge heart and it gets even bigger when he plays for his country. He's the only one who can turn it around and win it like he did. He has huge heart," Orsanic said.

Del Potro, the 2009 US Open champion and silver medalist in singles at the Rio Summer Olympics, rallied from two sets down to beat Croatia's top singles player Marin Cilic.

"This is the biggest year in my life, both emotionally and in terms of tennis," Del Potro said, referring to his comeback from a series of operations on his left wrist.

Last month, Del Potro beat American Jack Sock 7-5, 6-1 in the final of the Stockholm Open, winning his first title in 33 months.

The 28-year-old Del Potro, a former world No.4, had not won a title since Sydney in 2014.

Orsanic, Del Potro, Federico Delbonis, Leonardo Mayer and Guido Pella, accompanied by the team's support personnel, entered the Media Center carrying the Davis Cup replicas they each received.

--IANS

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