PRAGUE – Janko Tipsarevic saved three match points to beat Radek Stepanek 5-7, 6-4, 6-4, 4-6, 9-7 Friday, pulling Serbia even with the Czech Republic after the opening singles of their Davis Cup quarterfinal.
Earlier, Tomas Berdych eased past Viktor Troicki 6-2, 6-1, 6-2 to give the Czechs a 1-0 lead on the indoor clay court at O2 Arena.
Tipsarevic, who has climbed to a No. 8 ranking, faced a match point at 5-6 and two more at 6-7 in the fifth set. But he served well to remain in the match and won in more than five hours.
Doubles in the best-of-five series is Saturday and reverse singles is Sunday.
The winner advances to the semifinals in September. Serbia, without top-ranked Novak Djokovic, is looking to make a third straight semifinal.