Lleyton Hewitt has traced the years with John Peers to beat Austrian Jurgen Melzer and Oliver Marach 6-2, 6-4, 3-6 and 7-5 and keep Australia's hopes alive in the Davis Cup tiebreaker in Graz.
The 37-year-old, playing in his 80th game on the green and gold field, 19 years after making his debut, nominated himself ahead of Jordan Thompson, who was originally scheduled to be Peers' partner.
John Millman, who has been fighting the disease after his quarter-final match at the US Open. UU., He served as temporary captain of the court at the Messe Grand complex on open-air clay.
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Lleyton Hewitt (right) celebrated with teammate John Peers (left) after keeping Australia's Davis Cup hopes alive with a four-set victory over Austrians Jurgen Melzer and Oliver Marach
After Jordan Thompson and Alex de Minaur lost their singles tires to Dominic Thiem and Dennis Novak, respectively, the Saturday doubles clash was a must for the visitors.
Hewitt and Peers broke the Austrians twice in the first four games to overwhelm them in the first set and an early break in Melzer's serve helped them get the second.
But a raucous crowd of 6000 fans roared, Austria responded and took the third set after a marathon 3-1 point in the Marach service that produced 11 deuces and saw the hosts save eight break points.
The fourth set was very close and both teams maintained the service until the Peers hit a forehand to break Marach and seal the win.
Hewitt left his retirement to play in the doubles at the Australian Open in January.
"This is double in the Davis Cup," Hewitt said.
The 37-year-old (in the photo) nominated himself ahead of Jordan Thompson, who was in the struggle to be a Peers partner.
Saturday's duel was a bargain for the visitors, who had lost the first two singles matches of the Davis Cup tie with Austria.
"This is what it should be: it is meant to be in the middle of the day, it is destined to be the best of five sets and we are playing in a difficult place, far from home, on a hard clay court.
"John played fantastic today, we gelled very well, we went out at the beginning and turned it on and then we had to dig deep in the fourth set."
De Minaur now faces the daunting possibility of facing Thiem, the heir to the king of Rafael Nadal's clay crown at the opening of rematch singles on Sunday.
World No. 8 Thiem lost just four games in a 95-minute dismantling of Thompson and beat Minaur comfortably at his last previous meeting at the US Open last year.
"It's going to be a very difficult question again tomorrow," Hewitt said.
"But all my boys will prepare as well as possible and we will do everything we can and we will leave everything here.
& # 39; If it's good enough, it is, and if it is not, it is not. But we will give 100 percent. "
The winner of the tie will be seeded for the qualifying round of the renewed Davis Cup in February.