KUALA LUMPUR: The national squad secured their place in the playoff round of the Davis Cup Asia Oceania Group III competition after downing Pacific Oceania 2-1 in Vietnam last night.
The Pool A round robin encounter witnessed Ahmed Deedat Abdul Razak delivering the first point for Malaysia by downing Matthew Stubbings 7-6 (7-5), 7-5 at the My Dinh Sports Complex.
Christian Didier Chin then secured victory for the team with a 6-3, 6-2 victory over Colin Sinclair. Pacific Oceania, however, salvaged a point after Stubbings and Brett Baudinet downed Syed Agil Syed Naguib-Ashaari Zainal Abidin 7-5, 0-6, 6-4.
Despite securing their position in Group III and also a slot in the playoffs, national team captain Adam Jaya said his charges cannot afford to go easy against hosts Vietnam in their final round-robin game tonight.
"It (against Pacific Oceania) was a very important tie for us to win and it was great for us to qualify with one extra tie in hand," said Adam.
"Deedat started very slowly and was down 5-0 in the first set. He, however, showed great determination to come back and win in straight sets.
"Deedat's win put less pressure on Christian in the second rubber and he did not disappoint. Christian really stepped up after his win against Kenny Bun (on Tuesday).
"The matches will keep getting tougher and tougher from here and the players need to keep raising their game.
"Now our position in Group III is secure but that is not enough for us. We will try our best to go all the way and get promoted back to Group II.
"Again I'm asking, wish us luck and pray for us Malaysia."
Winning against Vietnam tonight will see the team emerging as group champions. Only the top two from each pool progress to the playoffs.
Malaysia defeated Cambodia 3-0 on Tuesday. Kuwait comfortably lead Pool B, which comprises five nations, with three wins.