France kept its Davis Cup final hopes alive as Nicolas Mahut and Pierre-Hugues Herbert beat the Croatian pair of Ivan Dodig and Mate Pavic 6-4, 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (3) at the Stade Pierre Mauroy on Saturday.
After the two pairs shared their service for 3-all in the opening six games, the Frenchmen registered their first break in the seventh before sealing the first set 6-4.
Mahut and Herbert won just four points more than their opponents but that was enough for a 3-1 triumph, playing a little bit better on the second serve to get broken only twice from nine chances they gave to Ivan and Mate.
Two launch parties were held on the scenario of owners of the court - Herbert and May in each set is made one break, and his serve played two break-point. Dodig and Pavic saved three match points in the 10th game, but finally failed to move further in the tiebreak.
Pouille, surprisingly left out of the opening singles rubbers on Friday despite his world ranking of 32 being the highest of the players available to Noah, will face world number seven Marin Cilic.
The second set was nearly the identical, Pavic and Dodig wasted a game point at 4-4 and they got broken at 15 in the following game, allowing the French squad to move two sets to love up after a commanding hold in game 10, just like in the opener. If Chardy manages to earn his third victory over Cilic, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Borna Coric will contest a live fifth rubber for the trophy.
In 1939, Australia became the first nation to achieve the feat, recovering from 0-2 down to defeat the United States.
Herbert struggled again on his serve as the French looked on the verge of a collapse at the start of the fourth, but he fought through a 13-minute game.
The match was extremely close, with the French team winning 143 overall points to 139 for the Croatians.
The Croat, yet to win a Davis Cup tie, duly buckled with a double fault at 0-30 and bedlam broke out in the stands with opposing fan clubs trying to out-sing each other.