Serbia levelled their Davis Cup World Group first round tie with Kazakhstan 2-2, after Novak Djokovic emerged victorious in a marathon five-setter against Mikhail Kukushkin 6-7 (6-8), 7-6 (7-3), 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 in Belgrade on Sunday.

The match lasted almost five hours (4:57). The world number one, with great support from the stands, managed to break the resistance of persistent Kukushkin after a lot of struggle and abdominal pain at the beginning of the fourth set.

On day one, Djokovic defeated Aleksandr Nedovyesov 3-0 but Kukushkin fought back, beating Troicki to tie Serbia 1-1, and in Saturday’s doubles, Kazakh Andrey Golubev and Nedovyesov beat Djokovic and Nenad Zimonjic to give Kazakhstan a 2-1 lead.

Now Serbia’s Viktor Troicki is meeting Nedovyesov in the decider. The winners advance to the quarterfinals.