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Canada's Frank Dancevic returns the ball to Belgium's Steve Darcis during the first singles match of the Davis Cup World Group quarter-finalGeert Vanden Wijngaert/The Associated Press

The absence of injured stars Milos Raonic and Vasek Pospisil is proving costly for Canada in its Davis Cup quarter-final tie.

The Canadians are down 2-0 to Belgium in the best-of-five series after losing Friday's opening singles matches.

"The guys gave it all they had today," said Canada's captain Martin Laurendeau. "It's a tough team, it's a tough surface and it's tough conditions. But we didn't come here just to put forth a good effort and go home. We really came here to win."

Vancouver's Filip Peliwo fell in straight sets to David Goffin while Belgium's Steve Darcis beat Frank Dancevic of Niagara Falls, Ont., 3-6, 6-1, 7-5, 6-3.

The tie is being played outdoors on clay.

Goffin, ranked No. 14, was rarely troubled against Peliwo and won 6-4, 6-4, 6-2.

Peliwo — ranked No. 491 — was making his Davis Cup debut.

"I did my best today but it wasn't good enough," said Peliwo. "I think I played a good match against a top-15 player and it was a really good experience for me. Against a guy like that you have to play pretty aggressive and I tried to do that but he showed why he's ranked where he is.

"There are no regrets on my part."

Earlier in the day, Darcis won six straight games in the second set to take a hold on Dancevic. Darcis forced 54 errors from his opponent and got a critical break in the third set. Darcis constantly put Dancevic under pressure on serve, and almost inevitably broke in the 11th game of the third set, and seventh game of the fourth.

"A couple points really made the difference today," said Dancevic. "It was really close and I could have gotten myself back in the match. I had a couple break chances in the third and fourth sets but he played really well on the key points. He just played better in the big moments than I did."

Dancevic is Canada's highest ranked player at No. 272 after seventh-ranked Raonic and No. 27 Pospisil withdrew with injuries.

No. 7 Canada needs to win all three remaining matches against Belgium to reach the World Group semifinals. The winner will face either Serbia or Argentina.

Daniel Nestor and Adil Shamasdin face Ruben Bemelmans and Kimmer Coppejans in doubles on Saturday.

With files from The Associated Press

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