Fed Cup Final 2014 Czech Republic vs Germany - a preview - UBITENNIS
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Fed Cup

Fed Cup Final 2014 Czech Republic vs Germany – a preview

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TENNIS FED CUP – Germany’s Angelique Kerber and Czech Republic’s Petra Kvitova will lead their respective nations’ hopes in the Fed Cup by BNP Paribas Final on 8-9 November 2014 in Prague.

Germany’s Angelique Kerber and Czech Republic’s Petra Kvitova will lead their respective nations’ hopes in the Fed Cup by BNP Paribas Final on 8-9 November 2014 in Prague, being played at the O2 Arena. The surface is hard court (Novacrylic Ultracushion System) and the balls are Wilson Tour Davis Cup (Thailand). The stadium capacity is 10850.

World No. 10 Kerber leads Barbara Rittner’s side into their first Fed Cup Final since 1992 at the venue, with No. 14 Andrea Petkovic, No. 27 Sabine Lisicki and No. 75 Julia Goerges completing a German line-up bursting with singles talent.

Germany makes one change from the team that assured its place in the Final by defeating Australia 3-1 in the World Group semifinals in Brisbane in April, with Sabine Lisicki coming in for doubles specialist Anna-Lena Groenefeld.

Czech Republic, meanwhile, will once again place its faith in Petra Kvitova ahead of its third Fed Cup Final in four years, with the world No. 4 supported by No. 17 Lucie Safarova. The Czechs have also handed a debut nomination to 22-year-old Karolina Pliskova with doubles world No. 22 Lucie Hradecka completing the line-up.

Pliskova has rocketed up the rankings this year, finding herself at a career-high No. 24 in the WTA ladder after winning her second and third career titles in Seoul and Linz in the last two months. While Pliskova has undoubtedly earned her call up on the biggest stage, Kvitova has been a driving force in the Czech team in recent years. She has won three of the four singles rubbers she has contested in Fed Cup Finals to help Petr Pala’s team to the 2011 and 2012 titles, and could well prove the decisive influence again in this year’s Final.

A closely contested Final, or so it appears on paper, should be further complicated by the head-to-head record between Czech Republic and Germany’s leading ladies. Lefthanders Kvitova and Kerber have met five times, and though Kvitova shades their previous meetings 3-2, four of those clashes have gone to three sets including Kvitova’s most recent wins over Kerber at both Tokyo and the WTA Championships in 2013.

Indeed, the two players most likely to take the No. 2 spot for their nations could be set for a similarly fierce contest. Petkovic has won four of her six meetings with lefthander Safarova but the Czech won their last clash on a hard court in a thrilling three sets in Beijing in 2013.

Just one spot separates the two 27-year-olds in the rankings, and both enter the Final on good form. World No. 17 Safarova reached the semifinals in Moscow last month, while Petkovic rebounded from first round losses in Linz and Luxembourg in October to win the WTA Tournament of Champions crown in Sofia, Bulgaria on Sunday.

That said, with two hungry players prepared to step into the second singles spot in Goerges and Lisicki who will be both looking to improve their Fed Cup singles records (4-5 and 5-5, respectively), captain Rittner certainly has options. Should the tie live up to expectations and come down to a deciding doubles, the Czechs can call upon 29-year-old Lucie Hradecka, who has lost just one of her previous five Fed Cup doubles rubbers.

The Czechs, seven time Fed Cup champions, have dominated this match-up in previous years, winning six of the seven encounters between the two nations.

The full team nominations for the Fed Cup Final are:

Czech Republic
Petra Kvitova
Lucie Safarova
Karolina Pliskova
Lucie Hradecka

Germany
Angelique Kerber
Andrea Petkovic
Sabine Lisicki
Julia Goerges

Germany, is bidding to record a third Fed Cup triumph, 22 years after last reigning supreme in the competition in 1992.

Especially Andrea Petkovic impressed one week before the Fed Cup Final as she claimed the WTA Tournament of Champions in Sofia after a hard-fought 1-6, 6-4, 6-3 victory in the final against the Italian Flavia Pennetta. Winning the fifth title in her career might be a perfect dress rehearsal for Petko as she will travel highly confident to Prague where she and Porsche Team Germany will do battle for the Fed Cup crown – much to the pleasure of Barbara Rittner. “She’s got herself out of a sticky patch,” said the Porsche Team Germany captain when talking about Andrea Petkovic’s success. The 27-year old is certain to be the German No. 2 singles player alongside Angelique Kerber. “Her form and self-confidence have come at just the right moment for Prague.”

Fed Cup

Injury Heartbreak Motivates Australia In Billie Jean King Cup Tie With Mexico

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SEVILLE, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 09: Storm Hunter of Team Australia reacts during the Billie Jean King Cup Finals group stage match between Australia and Kazakhstan at Estadio de La Cartuja on November 09, 2023 in Seville, Spain. (Photo by Fran Santiago/Getty Images for ITF)

The captain of the Australian Billie Jean King Cup team says they are supporting one of their top players after she suffered a serious injury on the eve of their latest tie. 

Storm Hunter, who is currently ranked No.3 in the world for doubles, has suffered a ruptured Achilles tendon whilst training at a practice session on Thursday with her teammates. The severity of the injury means she will almost certainly be forced to pull out of this summer’s Olympic Games where she would have been a medal contender, as well as both the French Open and Wimbledon. Hunter has already won a WTA 1000 title this season in Dubai and was also runner-up in Indian Wells. In both of those tournaments, she was partnering Kateřina Siniaková. 

“Unfortunately yesterday in our last practice before the tie, I went down and scans last night confirmed that I have ruptured my Achilles tendon,” said Hunter.
“I am devastated and heartbroken, but incredibly grateful to be around the team and I know I have a great group of people around me that will help me get back on the court as soon as possible.
“Thank you everyone so much everyone for your messages of support and love. I’m excited to stay for the tie and support our Aussie girls.”

According to the Australian press, team captain Sam Stosur said Hunter’s teammates are ‘rallying behind‘ her and “wishing her the very, very best and the quickest recovery possible.”

As a result of the injury, Daria Saville was brought in to play in her country’s singles match on the opening day of their tie against Mexico on Friday. The world No.94 was in top form as she charged to a comprehensive 6-1, 6-0, win over Marcela Zacarias in less than an hour. 

“Yesterday was a pretty tough day for all of us, pretty emotional,” said Saville who has undergone surgery on her Achilles in the past. 
“It’s so nice to have Stormy here supporting us. Not long ago that kind of happened to me … so we’re giving Stormy a lot of love. 
“I felt like I was pretty determined and clearly that showed.”

Despite the blow, Australia is on the verge of beating Mexico. In the other singles match on the opening day, Arina Rodionova came back from a set down to beat Giuliana Olmos 3-6, 6-3, 6-1. With a 2-0 lead, they only need one more win to clinch the tie. 

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Fed Cup

Italian Captain Tathiana Garbin Reveals Rare Tumor Diagnoses After Team’s Loss At BJK Finals

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Former top 30 player and captain of the Italian Billie Jean King Cup team Tathiana Garbin has publically announced that she is battling a serious health issue. 

Just hours after her team lost to Canada in the Billie Jean King Cup final in Seville on Sunday, the 46-year-old issued a statement confirming that she is undergoing treatment for a rare tumor that has been found in her stomach. Garbin had her first surgery in October but will have to undergo further procedures in the coming weeks. 

“I really wish to thank my Federation, which has constantly supported me with extraordinary solidarity and sensitivity,” Gabin said in a statement sent to the news agency Agenzia Nazionale Stampa Associata (ANSA). 
“Seville was a very important event for me, and I absolutely didn’t want to miss it despite being very close to my operation: the Federation has shown they placed full trust in me. There is nothing that makes me prouder than representing the colors of Italy. “

Gabin says she hopes to raise awareness of medical research and prevention by going public about her condition, as well as hoping to inspire others with her story. She is being treated by Professor Di Candio and Professor Morelli at the Cisanello Hospital in Pisa. 

“I thank my BJ King Cup girls, who have shown me incredible love and support. Their presence and support have been a beacon of positivity in these difficult days,” she said in tribute to her team.
“However, I would like to inform you that I will have to undergo a second surgery, required by the treatment planned by the doctors. Thanks to the rapid recovery I have experienced, I am optimistic about being back on court.”

As a player, Garbin peaked at a ranking high of No.22 in singles and No.25 in doubles. Her sole singles title on the WTA Tour occurred in 2000 when she won the Budapest Open in Hungary. Seven years after that, she reached the fourth round of the French Open in what was her best-ever run at a major event. 

Garbin has served as Italy’s Billie Jean King Cup captain since 2016. 

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Fed Cup

Doubles Delight: Great Britain Ousts France 2-1 In Davis Cup Classic

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Image via https://twitter.com/the_LTA/

Great Britain has won the last spot in the Davis Cup finals by prevailing in a highly dramatic clash against France in front of a record crowd in Manchester.

With the must-win showdown level at 1-1, the tie was decided by a rollercoaster doubles match with Dan Evans and Neil Skupski battling their way past Nicolas Mahut and Édouard Roger-Vasselin 1-6, 7-6(4), 7-6(6). In what was one of the most tense matches ever involving the British team, four match points were saved by the hosts. Evans fended off three whilst serving 4-5 down in the decider before Skupski saved one when he was serving two games later. To add to the drama, in the decisive tiebreaker Britain lost a mini-break advantage twice before prevailing on their second match point. 

“I don’t know how we’ve won that fight, sheer fight. Incredible effort from Dan to come out and win this match with me,” said Skupski.
“The first set wasn’t too good. We regrouped, took a toilet [break] and fought as hard as we could. Dan saving three points in the third set. The rest is history and we’re off to Malaga.” 

The triumph caps off what has been a marathon day at The AO Arena with all three matches going the full distance. A total of more than 13,000 seats was sold for the tie which is a record for a single day of Davis Cup action in the UK. 

Earlier in the day, Evans got Britain off to a perfect start by fighting back from a set and a break down to beat Arthur Fils 3-6, 6-3, 6-4, in what was a close fight. At the end of the encounter, there was a tense exchange between the two which continued during the doubles match with Evans seen making gestures towards the Frenchman who was watching from the stands. 

France’s sole victor was Ugo Humbert who beat former Wimbledon semi-finalist Cameron Norrie 7-6(5),3-6, 7-5. A new confidence blow to the British No.1 who has only won back-to-back matches in one out of his past five tournaments. 

“The team is amazing. We get on very well. Everyone’s played a part. It’s all those guys and girls standing there (in the stands) who are amazing.” Captain Leon Smith commented. 

Britain joins Australia in qualifying from Group B to November’s finals which will be held in Malaga. The team has won all three of their ties played in Manchester with their previous wins being over Australia and Switzerland earlier in the week. 

In total, eight teams have secured their place in the finals. Group stages have also been held in Spain, Croatia and Italy with the top two nations from each of those events progressing. 

Britain is seeking to win the Davis Cup title for only the second time in the Open Era after 2015. 

List of teams through to the knockout stages in Malaga

  • Great Britain
  • Australia
  • Finland
  • Italy
  • Canada
  • Serbia
  • Czech Republic
  • Netherlands

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