LONDON (Reuters) - Five nations sealed their debuts in the revamped Davis Cup Finals in the weekend's qualifiers while heavyweights Germany, Australia, United States and Croatia also booked their places in Madrid.
Ecuador, Sweden, Hungary, Czech Republic and Austria will all be in next week's draw for the 18-nation showdown at La Caja Magica in the Spanish capital in November, having missed the inaugural finals last year when the international teams event was revamped.
Ecuador's 3-0 victory over Japan was less surprising than it might look as hosts Japan were without Kei Nishikori because of injury and world number 48 Yoshihito Nishioka, who did not travel because he was concerned that the coronavirus crisis would prevent his return to the United States.
The match in Miki was played with no fans.
The South Americans made light of the strange environment, however, with Gonzalo Escobar and Diego Hidalgo securing the winning point in a decisive doubles victory over Ben McLachlan and Yasutaka Uchiyama.
Trailing 2-1 after Saturday's doubles, they went through with singles wins for Attila Balazs and Marton Fuscovics.
Fuscovics trailed Riben Bemelmans by a set but hit back to win 6-7(9) 6-4 6-2.
India caused a stir in Zagreb where veteran duo Leander Paes and Rohan Bopanna edged Mate Pavic and Franko Skugor in Saturday's doubles to keep alive the tie with Croatia. But Marin Cilic quickly doused Indian hopes with a 6-0 6-1 win over Sumit Nagal.
Six teams had already qualified for the Madrid showdown, the second version since the event was revamped in a $3-billion deal over 25 years between the ITF and Kosmos, the Spanish investment firm of Barcelona soccer player Gerard Pique.
(Reporting by Martyn Herman; Editing by Clare Fallon, Lincoln Feast and Frances Kerry)