McEnroe On Team World's Win: 'We Kept Battling'
Team World arrived in London this week having lost the previous four editions of the Laver Cup. However, John McEnroe's side showed quality and grit to turn the tables and triumph 13-8 against Team Europe on Sunday in a victory that left the American captain delighted.
“The difference [this year] was that we kept battling,” McEnroe said in Sunday’s press conference. “The format is a format that things can change in a hurry. Jack [Sock] has been awesome for us. You could see how close it was, the doubles.
“Felix, I've got to say, stepped up big time. Thank you so much for that. That was awesome. But there was a great team spirit. So we were battling from the beginning. I think we felt that it is the ‘Big Four’, but obviously the circumstances are a little different than they could have been 10 years ago, five years ago. So we knew we had a shot at it, but it was an uphill battle. Thank god World won.”
Team World entered the final day of the three-day event trailing 4-8. However, Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime did double duty to move his side ahead, before Frances Tiafoe defeated Stefanos Tsitsipas to seal victory.
Auger-Aliassime joined forces with Jack Sock to defeat Matteo Berrettini and Andy Murray, before he overcame Novak Djokovic in singles. The 22-year-old was proud of his performance and how the team stepped up.
“Of course I'm happy with the way I played,” Auger-Aliassime said. “Happy with my performance. Right now I'm just happy for the team, really happy to celebrate with these guys.
“It's been an amazing weekend. We were down yesterday night, but we came today with a big belief, and Jack and I got the job done in doubles. It was an important one. I was just trying to step up to the challenge. I will try to use that as confidence for the future.”
The World No. 19 Tiafoe, who reached the semi-finals at the US Open earlier this month, was grateful to have played against Federer in the Swiss star's final match and admitted he will be missed on Tour.
“I will say thank you [to Federer] for having me in this amazing event,” Tiafoe said. “What he's done for the game, also say thank you for what he did for the game. He's a class act. Happy to know him, happy to call him friend, happy to call him a colleague, and best wishes in his second act.”