FedCup 2015 - Germany sets out for another 'race' to win title - UBITENNIS
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Fed Cup

FedCup 2015 – Germany sets out for another ‘race’ to win title

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TENNIS FEDCUP 2015 – Last week-end Germany won their first round FedCup 2015 tie 4-1 against Australia in Stuttgart. After losing the 2014 final to the Czech Republic, Barbara Rittner’s team are aiming to bring home the title this year.

Some see Stuttgart as one of Germany’s secret strongholds of sport in general and tennis in particular. This refers not only to logistics as i.e. adjacent to Neckarparkstadion and German Bundesliga you’ll find Porsche Arena, which not only hosts the WTA Ladies Event Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in April but has also been home of several FedCup-home ties – but also to the number of high-class tennis events as also the ATP-men’s tournament MercedesCup is staged there.

So during the second weekend of February not only German Soccer Bundesliga was facing the Southern German derby VFB Stuttgart vs Bayern München (which left Pep Guardiola taking three more points back to Munich) but also right next door the German Tennis Ladies played their first FedCup tie this season against Australia. After coming in second in 2014 in a thrilling yet a little disapponting final in Prague, German coach Barbara Rittner and her team were off to secure a good start into this year’s competition. Day one saw as opener the German No. 1 Angelique Kerber with a solid performance against her Australian oponent Jarmila Gajdosova that however was not enough to bring the lead. After two years of injuries and bad luck, Gajdosova showed a brilliant performance in Porsche Arena Stuttgart, thus leaving Kerber unable to come to terms with the pressure and high expectations in her first home-match, so the Australian made it in three sets 4-6 6-2 6-4 – giving her team the lead.

Much to the pleasure of the German fans Angelique Kerber got back to winning ways on Sunday. Much improved when taking on Samantha Stosur in the top match between the two No. 1s, she was in command throughout against the former grand slam champion when winning 6-2 6-4 in front of a 4000 crowd. “I went out onto court and wanted to show that I can do better,” said the Porsche Brand Ambassador. “And with the support of the fantastic crowd, I delivered.”

That the German team was able to go 2-1 up was also and foremost down to Andrea Petkovic. In a nail-biting three-hour tennis thriller, the German overcame Samantha Stosur 6-4 3-6 and 12-10 in the second match on Saturday that way keeping Porsche Team Germany in the running for a semi-final place. “It was one of the matches of my career and one I will have in my head for ever,” Petkovic said after her gala performance on Centre Court in Stuttgart. Congratulated by Steffi Graf from distant Las Vegas, Andrea Petkovic again produced the goods on Sunday, decision day. In another pulsating rubber, she eventually defeated Jarmila Gajdosova 6-3 3-6 8-6 to clinch Germany a place in the semi-final against Russia.

In the final doubles, Germany’s Julia Görges and Sabine Lisicki beat Casey Dellacqua and Olivia Rogowska 6-7 7-6 10-6 and so secured the 4-1 win of the rubber. “I’m incredibly proud of my players,” said team captain Barbara Rittner who went on to thank the Stuttgart crowd for their fantastic support: “We just can’t imagine playing anywhere else.”

So the German FedCup team is well on track, something that cannot be said for the men’s Davis Cup team. Shortly after coming back from the Australian Open, Carsten Arriens was ‘released’ from his post as team-coach. Not even three weeks before their first round tie against France (again in Frankfurt where the whole desaster started last year) the team is pretty much left alone … as so far, a follower into this position could has not been found.

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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