Buenos Aires: David Nalbandian played his second five-hour, five-set match in two days when he teamed with Eduardo Schwank to hand Argentina a 2-1 lead over Croatia in their Davis Cup quarterfinal on Saturday.

Nalbandian and Schwank saw off Marin Cilic and Ivo Karlovic 3-6, 7-6 (8/6), 6-3, 6-7 (6/8), 8-6 after Friday's opening singles had been shared.

World number 10 Juan Martin del Potro had shrugged off a bout of nausea to cruise past Karlovic 6-2, 7-6 (9/7), 6-1 after Cilic had given Croatia, the 2005 champions, a winning start when he beat Nalbandian 5-7, 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (7/2), 6-3.

That had been another five-hour epic and featured 241 unforced errors.

Argentina, last year's runners-up to Spain, hold the unwanted record for reaching the most Davis Cup finals without winning the title, having fallen in four finals.

The last time Argentina lost a home tie on clay was against the Slovak Republic in 1998.

The winners of this tie will face either the Czech Republic or Serbia in the semifinals.

(Agencies)