Israel have been relegated from the Davis Cup World Group after going down 3-2 to Austria at the Nokia Arena in Tel Aviv.
Having rubbed shoulders with the top nations for three years, Israel were unable to capatilise on a 2-1 advantage going into the two reverse single rubbers.
Israel got off to a flyer in the opening rubber with Dudi Sela
However, Austria levelled the tie when world No. 13 Jurgen Melzer eased past Sela (85) in straight sets. Israel’s fate was sealed when a tiring Levy (223) capitulated against Martin Fischer (134) in the decisive rubber.
Levy was magnanimous in defeat. "Fischer played amazingly, he was fantastic in his first Davis Cup rubber, Austria are worthy of being in the World Group.
Israel captain Eyal Ran said: “It’s very painful to lose like this. We had a 2-1 lead and we were close to the win, but in sports you need to know how to close it out. I’m proud of the players. I hope we learn from this and keep this squad together for another year so we can return to the World Group.”