Author Topic: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012  (Read 1187 times)

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Offline conchita

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World Group Semifinals

Russia vs Serbia

Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Sports Palace "Megasport", Moscow, Russia
Start times:
Day 1: 1500 hrs (1100 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1400 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Surface: Clay (Red Clay), Indoor

Russia has a perfect 3-0 record against Serbia although all but the most recent was played as USSR against Yugoslavia. In the most recent meeting two singles victories was Jelena Jankovic was not enough to see off the Russian combination of Svetlana Kuznetsova and Alisa Kleybanova in the 2010 first round as Serbia fell to a 3-2 home defeat.

Russia braved freezing temperatures outside to see off Spain in the Olympic Stadium, Moscow during the opening round as they look to add to their haul of four titles since 2004. However, they have not won the title since 2008 losing out in last year’s final against Czech Republic.

This is Serbia’s first appearance at this stage of the competition having seen off Belgium in the opening round. Trailing 2-1 in the tie Bojana Jovanovski pulled them back first with a straight sets win over Kirsten Flipkens and then teamed with Aleksandra Krunic in the doubles to complete the turnaround.

Russia
Maria Kirilenko
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova
Svetlana Kuznetsova
Elena Vesnina
Shamil Tarpischev (captain)
 
Serbia
Ana Ivanovic
Jelena Jankovic
Bojana Jovanovski
Aleksandra Krunic
Dejan Vranes (captain)

R1 A. PAVLYUCHENKOVA vs J. JANKOVIC
R2 S. KUZNETSOVA vs A. IVANOVIC
R3 A. PAVLYUCHENKOVA vs A. IVANOVIC
R4 S. KUZNETSOVA vs J. JANKOVIC
R5 M. KIRILENKO / E. VESNINA / vs B. JOVANOVSKI / A.KRUNIC


Czech Republic vs Italy
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: CEZ Arena, Ostrava, Czech Republic
Start times:
Day 1: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1100 hrs (0900 hrs GMT)
Surface: Hard (Novacrylic Ultracushion System ), Indoor

Italy has won four straight ties against Czech Republic dating back to 1998 having lost the first three meetings. The last of these came in the 2010 semifinal where the clay court prowess of Francesca Schiavone, Flavia Pennetta and Sara Errani shone through in a 5-0 score line. This will be the fourth consecutive semifinal appearance for both nations.

Czech Republic are looking to continue a run of four victories in Fed Cup and defend the title that they won last season. This will be the first home tie for them since playing Germany in Brno in February 2010 since when they have travelled to play their last five ties. Petra Kvitova’s astonishing run of form indoors saw them past a strong German team in the opening round.

Roberta Vinci extended her perfect record in doubles to 17-0, a Fed Cup record, when she partnered Flavia Pennetta to battle Italy past Ukraine in a closely fought first round tie. However, it was the first time since 2007 that Vinci played the doubles with the tie still on the line.

Czech Republic
Petra Kvitova
Lucie Safarova
Lucie Hradecka
Andrea Hlavackova
Petr Pala (captain)
 
Italy
Francesca Schiavone
Roberta Vinci
Flavia Pennetta
Sara Errani
Corrado Barazzutti (captain)

R1 L. SAFAROVA vs F. SCHIAVONE
R2 P. KVITOVA vs S. ERRANI
R3 P. KVITOVA vs F. SCHIAVONE
R4 L. SAFAROVA vs S. ERRANI
R5 A. HLAVACKOVA / L. HRADECKA vs S. ERRANI / R. VINCI
« Last Edit: April 20, 2012, 05:57:18 AM by conchita »
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Offline conchita

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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2012, 05:25:37 AM »
World Group Playoffs
Winning nations qualify for World Group in 2013
Losing nations contest World Group II in 2013


Ukraine vs USA
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Superior Golf & Spa Resort, Kharkiv, Ukraine
Start times:
Day 1: 1130 hrs (0830 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1100 hrs (0800 hrs GMT)
Surface: Clay (Red Clay), Outdoor

R1 L. TSURENKO vs C. MCHALE
R2 E. SVITOLINA vs S. WILLIAMS
R3 L. TSURENKO vs S. WILLIAMS
R4 E. SVITOLINA vs C. MCHALE
R5 L. KICHENOK / N. KICHENOK vs L. HUBER /S.STEPHENS

Japan vs Belgium
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Ariake Coliseum, Tokyo, Japan
Start times:
Day 1: 1300 hrs (0400 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1300 hrs (0400 hrs GMT)
Surface: Hard (DecoTurf), Indoor

R1 A. MORITA vs A. VAN UYTVANCK
R2 K. DATE-KRUMM vs T. HENDLER
R3 A. MORITA vs T. HENDLER
R4 K. DATE-KRUMM vs A. VAN UYTVANCK
R5 R. FUJIWARA / A. MORITA vs Y. BONAVENTURE / A. MESTACH

Spain vs Slovak Republic
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Club de Tenis Puente Romano, Marbella, Spain
Start times:
Day 1: 1115 hrs (0915 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1100 hrs (0900 hrs GMT)
Surface: Clay (Red Clay), Outdoor

R1 L. DOMINGUEZ-LINO vs D. CIBULKOVA
R2 S. SOLER-ESPINOSA vs D. HANTUCHOVA
R3 S. SOLER-ESPINOSA vs D. CIBULKOVA
R4 L. DOMINGUEZ-LINO vs D. HANTUCHOVA
R5 N. LLAGOSTERA VIVES / A. PARRA-SANTONJA vs  D. CIBULKOVA / D. HANTUCHOVA

Germany vs Australia
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Porsche Arena, Stuttgart, Germany
Start times:
Day 1: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Surface: Clay (Red Clay), Indoor

R1 A. KERBER vs S. STOSUR
R2 J. GOERGES vs J. GAJDOSOVA
R3 J. GOERGES vs S. STOSUR v
R4 A. KERBER vs J. GAJDOSOVA
R5 A. GROENEFELD / A. PETKOVIC vs C. DELLACQUA / S. STOSUR
« Last Edit: April 20, 2012, 06:30:11 AM by conchita »
Self-praise is for losers. Be a winner. Stand for something. Always have class, and be humble.

Offline conchita

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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2012, 05:32:13 AM »
World Group II Playoffs
Winning nations qualify for World Group II in 2013
Losing nations contest Zone Groups in 2013


France vs Slovenia
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Palais des Sports, Besancon, France
Start times:
Day 1: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Surface: Hard (Acrylic), Indoor

R1 V. RAZZANO vs P. HERCOG
R2 P. PARMENTIER vs N. KOLAR
R3 P. PARMENTIER vs P. HERCOG
R4 V. RAZZANO vs N. KOLAR
R5 S. FORETZ GACON /  K. MLADENOVIC vs P. HERCOG / K. SREBOTNIK

Switzerland vs Belarus
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Complexe Sportive des Iles, Yverdon-les-Bains, Switzerland
Start times:
Day 1: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1100 hrs (0900 hrs GMT)
Surface: Hard (Rebound Ace), Indoor

R1 T. BACSINSZKY vs O. GOVORTSOVA
R2 S. VOEGELE vs A. SASNOVICH
R3 S. VOEGELE vs O. GOVORTSOVA
R4 T. BACSINSZKY vs A. SASNOVICH
R5 B. BENCIC / A. SADIKOVIC vs O. GOVORTSOVA / D. KUSTOVA

Sweden vs Great Britain
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Borashallen, Boras, Sweden
Start times:
Day 1: 1400 hrs (1200 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1100 hrs (0900 hrs GMT)
Surface: Hard (Latex-ite), Indoor

R1 J. LARSSON vs E. BALTACHA
R2 S. ARVIDSSON vs A. KEOTHAVONG
R3 S. ARVIDSSON vs E. BALTACHA
R4 J. LARSSON vs A. KEOTHAVONG
R5 S. ARVIDSSON / J. LARSSON vs L. ROBSON / H. WATSON

Argentina vs China
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Parque Roca, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Start times:
Day 1: 1030 hrs (1330 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1045 hrs (1345 hrs GMT)
Surface: Clay (Red Clay), Outdoor
R1 P. ORMAECHEA vs Y. ZHOU
R2 F. MOLINERO vs Q. WANG
R3 P. ORMAECHEA vs Q. WANG
R4 F. MOLINERO vs Y. ZHOU
R5 M. AUROUX / M. IRIGOYEN vs C. LIANG / W. LIU
« Last Edit: April 20, 2012, 12:45:34 PM by conchita »
Self-praise is for losers. Be a winner. Stand for something. Always have class, and be humble.

Offline conchita

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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2012, 04:27:03 PM »
Kuznetsova draws Russia level in Moscow



It is perhaps a sign of just how confident the Serbians were feeling going into their Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group semifinal with Russia in Moscow this weekend that, if anything, there was an air of disappointment about the visiting captain Dejan Vranes at the end of the first day’s play.

Despite sharing the opening two singles rubbers on the Megasport Arena’s indoor clay, Vranes admitted that he was perhaps hoping for more from Saturday’s two singles after Jelena Jankovic had beaten an out-of-sorts Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, before an inspired Svetlana Kuznetsova outhit the in-form Ana Ivanovic to level the tie.

“I have to say that after the first day I thought it could be 2-0 to Serbia,” Vranes said after the red dust had settled. “Jelena played very well and we won that match, but for me it’s a little bit surprising how good Kuznetsova played today.”

Kuznetsova will certainly be the toast of the Russian camp on Saturday evening after a spirited performance in a must-win match against an opponent 12 places higher in the WTA rankings.

The two-time Grand Slam champion and world No. 27 began superbly, blowing Ivanovic away in a 24-minute first set full of aggressive clay court tennis before weathering a second set storm to crawl over the finish line 62 26 64.

The victory is even more impressive given Kuznetsova had won just two of their eight meetings going into the contest and had never beaten Ivanovic on clay. But the 26-year-old appears to relish playing for her country and she was so focused on the job towards the end of the deciding set that once match point had been converted she was the only person in the 5,150-capacity arena not to realise she had won the match.

“I thought it was something else, another score, I thought I was serving for the match or something!” she admitted after securing her 25th Fed Cup victory. “I was so focused on the game and I think it was the key for me today. I played so well in the first set, then lost a little bit of concentration and she turned it around because I stopped dictating it. It’s a very big point for us. I’m looking forward to tomorrow.”

Like her captain, Ivanovic also admitted she had been shocked by the level of Kuznetsova’s tennis. “She played really well,” the world No.15 said. “I was really surprised - even from behind the baseline she was hitting some winners. It was very hard to read her game.”

The complexion of the tie would have been very different indeed had Kuznetsova not delivered for the hosts after an erratic performance from the Russian No. 1 Pavlyuchenkova earlier in the day. The 20-year-old world No. 22 has only won three singles matches on tour this year and she will be far from pleased with her 11 double faults and 45 unforced errors during a 64 63 defeat.

Jankovic still had to battle hard mind, coming back from a break down twice in the opening set, but Pavlyuchenkova’s serve misfired at crucial moments, particularly when she threw in two double faults when serving to stay in the opening set at 4-5.

Like Kuznetsova, Jankovic had been able to turn the tables on an opponent she’d had trouble against in the past, securing her first ever victory over the Russian in four attempts. “I’m very happy to win and get a point for Serbia,” the former world No. 1 said. “To be honest, I was very nervous and I’m happy I was able to perform.”

Pavlyuchenkova will get the chance to make amends when she steps up first on Sunday against Ivanovic, before Kuznetsova takes on Jankovic. If those matches are shared it will go down to the doubles where - providing neither captain changes their nominations - Russians Elena Vesnina and Maria Kirilenko will do battle with Bojana Jovanovski and Aleksandra Krunic.

“We feel very good and I think my players are playing very good, but I’m expecting tough matches and I hope they have enough strength to win,” reflected Vranes on his nation’s bid to reach its first Fed Cup final.

“We will see.”
Self-praise is for losers. Be a winner. Stand for something. Always have class, and be humble.

Offline conchita

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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2012, 04:29:16 PM »
Czechs put one foot in Final



This is exactly how the Czechs dreamed it. Two-nil up after the first day, four sets out of four and a boisterous home crowd sent home ecstatic. The defending champions of the Fed Cup by BNP Paribas already have half a racquet in another final.
 
Lucie Safarova impressively got the ball rolling for the Czechs, dispatching the Italian No. 1 Francesca Schiavone 76 61. It was a largely fluid display from the 25-year-old, though initially she didn’t make it easy for herself.
 
Safarova took advantage of Schiavone’s stuttering serve to break in the opening game, but once the World No. 12 overcame four early foot faults she began to settle into the match. Her chance came with Safarova two points away from the set. The Czech – who went into the match having won just five of her 15 Fed Cup rubbers – tightened up and was broken.
 
The former Roland Garros champion was so fired up that she held to love and looked almost certain to steal the set, holding two set points at 15-40 up in the following game. Three deuces followed before eventually Safarova clung on to force the tiebreak, saving a total of three set points after finding some of her best serves of the match.
 
The momentum had swung again with Schiavone disgusted with herself for not taking her opportunities, throwing an empty bottle to the floor in contempt at 1-5 down in the tiebreak. That was too much of a gap to bridge and Safarova took it 7-3 with a typical forehand winner and never looked back.
 
Schiavone was trying to beat her opponent for the first time in four attempts on hard courts, but Safarova’s confidence was sky high and this was illustrated by her increasingly varied choices of shot, regularly finishing points off with deft volleys at the net.
 
This left Schiavone looking short of answers and as a result she quickly fell behind at the start of the second set. It looked yet bleaker for her when she received medical attention at 1-4 because of a back problem she says she’s felt for the last “10 to 15 days”.
 
Safarova’s rhythm wasn’t to be disrupted though and she eased past the finish line. She said: “I feel amazing with so many people here cheering for you which gives you huge power.”
 
It’s no surprise she felt so much inspiration from the Czech support given their energy has been building up for over two years since their last home tie.
 
Schiavone, who was as downbeat as her conqueror was beaming, admitted afterwards: “I had my chance, but I didn’t catch it…I couldn’t play the best.”
 
The Czech onlookers were given even more to cheer about in the second rubber, though it didn’t look as if that would be the case when Sara Errani admirably battled against the world No. 3 and the partisan crowd to earn an early break. The problem was that Kvitova looked most hungry on the return of serve and immediately levelled up at 2-2 in the first set.
 
The Czech was looking for her ninth successive win in Fed Cup and she was unrelenting in attempting as many winners as possible. Though this naturally brought a higher number of unforced errors, she peaked at the right moment getting the break at the end of the set as she devoured Errani’s weakening serve.
 
Errani says one of the players she admires the most is David Ferrer and some of the Spaniard’s doggedness was visible in the way she broke Kvitova immediately at the start of the second set before grinding out a 3-1 lead.
 
That would be as good as it got for the world No. 28 as Kvitova stormed back demonstrating the kind of skill that led her to her Wimbledon title. A string of forehand winners and even some sumptuous net play saw her seal it with five consecutive games.
 
Reflecting afterwards Kvitova said: “I had to play a really tough match especially after Sara played so well last week.” Playing in front of many fans who made the 30-minute journey from her home town of Fulnek, she added: “They really helped me a lot. Without them it would be boring. I’m really happy to be playing close to home after two years.”
 
Despite a defeat that leaves her country in a perilous position, Errani was able to recognise her opponent was just too strong, saying: “I had my chances, but unfortunately it went like that. I think she closed both sets very well.”
 
Czech captain Petr Pala couldn’t have been more pleased with his charges, saying: “I’m very proud of my girls, but we still have one more point to win. We’re still facing a very tough opponent and we have to concentrate. It’s definitely the best atmosphere we’ve played in Fed Cup. It definitely helps.”
 
If Italy are to be victorious this weekend they’ll have to do something they never have before and that’s to fight back from 0-2 down. It’s not impossible and the determination and belief within Errani remains unaffected. When asked if they can still reach the final she simply responded, “Yes, of course. We will try.”
Self-praise is for losers. Be a winner. Stand for something. Always have class, and be humble.

Offline conchita

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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2012, 04:36:24 PM »
World Group Playoffs
Winning nations qualify for World Group in 2013
Losing nations contest World Group II in 2013


Ukraine 0 : 2 USA
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Superior Golf & Spa Resort, Kharkiv, Ukraine
Start times:
Day 1: 1130 hrs (0830 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1100 hrs (0800 hrs GMT)
Surface: Clay (Red Clay), Outdoor

R1 C. MCHALE d. L. TSURENKO 61 46 63
R2 S. WILLIAMS d. E. SVITOLINA 62 61
R3 L. TSURENKO vs S. WILLIAMS
R4 E. SVITOLINA vs C. MCHALE
R5 L. KICHENOK / N. KICHENOK vs L. HUBER /S.STEPHENS

Japan 2 : 0 Belgium
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Ariake Coliseum, Tokyo, Japan
Start times:
Day 1: 1300 hrs (0400 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1300 hrs (0400 hrs GMT)
Surface: Hard (DecoTurf), Indoor

R1 A. MORITA d. A. VAN UYTVANCK 64 64
R2 K. DATE-KRUMM d. T. HENDLER 61 64
R3 A. MORITA vs T. HENDLER
R4 K. DATE-KRUMM vs A. VAN UYTVANCK
R5 R. FUJIWARA / A. MORITA vs Y. BONAVENTURE / A. MESTACH

Spain 1 : 1 Slovak Republic
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Club de Tenis Puente Romano, Marbella, Spain
Start times:
Day 1: 1115 hrs (0915 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1100 hrs (0900 hrs GMT)
Surface: Clay (Red Clay), Outdoor

R1  D. CIBULKOVA d. L. DOMINGUEZ-LINO 63 60
R2 S. SOLER-ESPINOSA vs D. HANTUCHOVA 76(5) 64
R3 S. SOLER-ESPINOSA vs D. CIBULKOVA
R4 L. DOMINGUEZ-LINO vs D. HANTUCHOVA
R5 N. LLAGOSTERA VIVES / A. PARRA-SANTONJA vs  D. CIBULKOVA / D. HANTUCHOVA

Germany 0 : 2 Australia
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Porsche Arena, Stuttgart, Germany
Start times:
Day 1: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Surface: Clay (Red Clay), Indoor

R1 S. STOSUR d. A. KERBER 76(1) 64
R2 J. GAJDOSOVA d. J. GOERGES 64 64
R3 J. GOERGES vs S. STOSUR v
R4 A. KERBER vs J. GAJDOSOVA
R5 A. GROENEFELD / A. PETKOVIC vs C. DELLACQUA / S. STOSUR
Self-praise is for losers. Be a winner. Stand for something. Always have class, and be humble.

Offline conchita

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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2012, 04:42:30 PM »
World Group II Playoffs
Winning nations qualify for World Group II in 2013
Losing nations contest Zone Groups in 2013


France 2 : 0 Slovenia
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Palais des Sports, Besancon, France
Start times:
Day 1: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Surface: Hard (Acrylic), Indoor

R1 V. RAZZANO d. P. RAMPRE 26 64 64
R2 P. PARMENTIER d. N. KOLAR 62 63
R3 P. PARMENTIER vs P. RAMPRE
R4 V. RAZZANO vs N. KOLAR
R5 S. FORETZ GACON /  K. MLADENOVIC vs P. HERCOG / K. SREBOTNIK

Switzerland 1 : 1 Belarus
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Complexe Sportive des Iles, Yverdon-les-Bains, Switzerland
Start times:
Day 1: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1100 hrs (0900 hrs GMT)
Surface: Hard (Rebound Ace), Indoor

R1 O. GOVORTSOVA d. T. BACSINSZKY 64 64
R2 S. VOEGELE d. A. SASNOVICH 60 57 63
R3 S. VOEGELE vs O. GOVORTSOVA
R4 T. BACSINSZKY vs A. SASNOVICH
R5 B. BENCIC / A. SADIKOVIC vs O. GOVORTSOVA / D. KUSTOVA

Sweden 2 : 0 Great Britain
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Borashallen, Boras, Sweden
Start times:
Day 1: 1400 hrs (1200 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1100 hrs (0900 hrs GMT)
Surface: Hard (Latex-ite), Indoor

R1 J. LARSSON d. E. BALTACHA 61 75
R2 S. ARVIDSSON d. A. KEOTHAVONG 61 64
R3 S. ARVIDSSON vs E. BALTACHA
R4 J. LARSSON vs A. KEOTHAVONG
R5 S. ARVIDSSON / J. LARSSON vs L. ROBSON / H. WATSON

Argentina 2 : 0 China
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Parque Roca, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Start times:
Day 1: 1030 hrs (1330 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1045 hrs (1345 hrs GMT)
Surface: Clay (Red Clay), Outdoor
R1 P. ORMAECHEA d. Y. ZHOU 62 62
R2 F. MOLINERO d. Q. WANG 63 64
R3 P. ORMAECHEA vs Q. WANG
R4 F. MOLINERO vs Y. ZHOU
R5 M. AUROUX / M. IRIGOYEN vs C. LIANG / W. LIU
Self-praise is for losers. Be a winner. Stand for something. Always have class, and be humble.

Offline conchita

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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2012, 10:52:29 AM »
Serbia surge into first ever Final



Russia 2 : 3 Serbia

Serbia can start planning for their first ever Fed Cup by BNP Paribas Final against Czech Republic later this year after an emotional 3-2 victory over Russia in Moscow on Sunday. After sharing the opening two singles on Saturday, victories from Ana Ivanovic over Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Jelena Jankovic against Svetlana Kuznetsova mean Serbian fans can toast yet another memorable day in its sporting history.

A topsy-turvy 36 60 63 success for Ivanovic put Serbia up 2-1 and just one win away from the Final, before Jankovic produced a composed and experienced performance under pressure to outwit Kuznetsova 61 64. A Russian 64 60 victory in the doubles dead rubber for Elena Vesnina and Pavlyuchenkova over Bojana Jovanovski and Aleksandra Krunic will do nothing to dampen the Serbian celebrations that will surely go on long into the Moscow night.

After journeying from the lower rungs of the competition and toppling one of the giants of the Fed Cup in the semifinals - Russia have won the trophy four times in the last decade - it was the unlikely figure of Jankovic’s mother, Snezana, who did such a good job of summing up the weekend’s events. “It’s amazing,” she said as she fought her way onto court to join the celebrations. “Coming to Russia was mission impossible!”

While Serbian captain Dejan Vranes was more optimistic about his team’s chances, he did acknowledge that it had been an adventure strung out over many years. “The journey has been very long - five years long - so I’m very happy to make it to the final,” he said. “I want to congratulate the girls. They played very good. We did everything possible to prepare for the match and I think we deserve the victory.”

For around half an hour between two and three o’clock inside the city’s Megasport Arena, though, it was the Russians who were in full voice and dreaming of another Final. Pavlyuchenkova - so erratic and unpredictable on Saturday - came out all guns blazing and raced into a 5-0 first set lead against a stunned Ivanovic.
 
The elegant Serb must have been wondering whether this was the same player she had beaten in all three of their previous meetings without dropping a single set. Her Russian opponent fired winners from both flanks for fun while Ivanovic looked on in bemusement towards her team bench. From 0-5, however, the former world No. 1 and Roland Garros champion slowly but surely began to work her way into the rallies and the cracks in Pavlyuchenkova’s game that were so evident 24 hours earlier began to emerge once more.

Ivanovic clawed her way back to 2-5 and even though Pavlyuchenkova finally managed to wrap up the first set, it was clear to everyone that Ivanovic was now back in the match. The world No. 15 rattled off six successive games to level the contest with a ‘bagel’ and set the tone early in the decider by breaking in the first game and racing into a 4-0 lead. Although Pavlyuchenkova rallied briefly, she was effectively done and it wasn’t long before Serbia were just one rubber from victory.

“I was a little bit tense in the beginning,” admitted Ivanovic afterwards. “She was playing well, hardly missing a ball, every shot was a winner, and I didn’t feel like I was doing much wrong. But in the second and third sets I stayed really composed.”

If the Russians were expecting Kuznetsova to reproduce the same sort of attacking clay court tennis that had been too much for Ivanovic on Saturday, then they were to be disappointed. Jankovic, who has won more Fed Cup singles rubbers for her country than any other player, had waited a long time for this opportunity and she wasn’t about to fluff her lines.

Watched closely by the new coach she began working with just last Tuesday, Zeljko Krajan, she was rock solid during a 36-minute opening set that she dominated, breaking twice. Kuznetsova looked like staging a dramatic comeback when she opened up a 3-0 lead early in the second, but she couldn’t maintain that level and Jankovic hit back superbly before holding her nerve to serve out the match.

“I have goosebumps right now because it’s so exciting for us,” Jankovic said after being mobbed by her teammates on court. “At the end I was thinking, ‘Oh my God, we’re going to get in the Final.’ I was like, ‘Just get the serve in, just play the point!’ I was so happy to win in the end, it wasn’t easy.”

Kuznetsova cut a disconsolate figure as she trudged off court, and admitted the efforts of the previous day had caught up with her. “It was a bit too intense for me,” said the two-time Grand Slam winner. “I haven’t played a very intense match like yesterday’s for a while and it was a little bit hard for my body to wake up. Jelena played good today - she didn’t give me much rhythm. I did my best and today wasn’t my day.”
« Last Edit: April 22, 2012, 11:40:39 AM by conchita »
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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #8 on: April 22, 2012, 10:54:25 AM »
Kvitova leads Czechs into another Final



Czech Republic 4 : 1 Italy

The Czech Republic are through to a second successive final in the Fed Cup by BNP Paribas after securing an unassailable 3-0 lead over the world No. 1 nation, Italy. Petra Kvitova’s third-rubber 64 76 victory over Francesca Schiavone confirmed their progression after a ruthless display of dominance in Ostrava.
 
After playing in front of a Czech crowd for the first time in over two years Petr Pala couldn’t hide his pride. The horns and drums were still booming from the partisan support in the CEZ Arena when he spoke after the third rubber. He said: “I can’t be any prouder than this. Three out of three against such a strong team, I’m very proud. Francesca put up a great fight, but I believe Petra was a little better and deserved to win.”
 
The challenge on the day two was always going to be extremely difficult for Italy who had never overturned a 2-0 deficit in their history. That was to remain the case when the two countries’ number ones went head-to-head in the opening match of the day.
 
There were several breaks of serve before a tense moment at 5-4. On Kvitova’s third set point she struck what she believed to be a winner and promptly ran to her chair in celebration, but hidden under the mild euphoria from the supporters there was a call of out. They challenged and the call was confirmed so back to the baseline she trudged.
 
Strangely, it was Schiavone who appeared the one adversely affected as she immediately double-faulted before a wayward backhand slice gave the Wimbledon champion the opening set.
 
A fired up Italian looked desperate to prove a point and she consequently found a break in the fifth game of the second set with some more deep sliced returns against a Kvitova serve beginning to show signs of tension.
 
Anxiety got the better of Schiavone though when attempting to serve out the second set. Her serve got noticeably weaker and just like yesterday, Kvitova catapulted back some deadly returns at the most important moments to break and ultimately force the tiebreak.
 
This time the World No. 3 was in the zone. There was a steely determination in her eyes that suggested she was going to seize the initiative and she did so in style. At the change of ends, almost all the pressure was off after some more power hitting saw her open up a 6-0 lead. Schiavone was blown away with Kvitova clinching it on her second match point to spark delirious celebrations among the over 7,000 Czech spectators.
 
Petra Kvitova said “It’s an unbelievable feeling. I really wanted to be again in the final. I hope that the public that was here come to support us in the final again.” She added: “Every Fed Cup I’m playing I’m nervous. Francesca played unbelievable tennis. I’m very happy I won.”
 
Schiavone felt the difference was largely down Kvitova playing better at the most intense moments. She said: “When you are so close with the score, you never know. I had a lot of chances. She played better than me at these moments. She played some good points when I was serving for the set and in the tiebreak. I was close."
 
Petr Pala is already looking forward to a home tie in November’s final against  Serbia, while his Italian counterpart Corrado Barazzutti emphasised that the fast hard courts made the telling difference. That’s a contrasting story to almost exactly two years ago. In 2010, Italy revelled on the slow clay courts in Rome to demolish the Czechs 5-0. How times change.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2012, 11:42:48 AM by conchita »
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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #9 on: April 22, 2012, 11:10:08 AM »
World Group Playoffs
Winning nations qualify for World Group in 2013

Losing nations contest World Group II in 2013

Ukraine 0 : 5 USA
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Superior Golf & Spa Resort, Kharkiv, Ukraine
Start times:
Day 1: 1130 hrs (0830 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1100 hrs (0800 hrs GMT)
Surface: Clay (Red Clay), Outdoor

R1 C. MCHALE d. L. TSURENKO 61 46 63
R2 S. WILLIAMS d. E. SVITOLINA 62 61
R3 S. WILLIAMS d. L. TSURENKO 63 62
R4 C. MCHALE d. E. SVITOLINA 75 63
R5 L. HUBER /S.STEPHENSL. d. KICHENOK / N. KICHENOK 64 61

Japan 4 : 1 Belgium
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Ariake Coliseum, Tokyo, Japan
Start times:
Day 1: 1300 hrs (0400 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1300 hrs (0400 hrs GMT)
Surface: Hard (DecoTurf), Indoor

R1 A. MORITA d. A. VAN UYTVANCK 64 64
R2 K. DATE-KRUMM d. T. HENDLER 61 64
R3 A. MORITA d. T. HENDLER 75 62
R4 A. VAN UYTVANCK d. K.NARA 76(2) 60
R5 K. DATE-KRUMM / R. FUJIWARA d. Y. BONAVENTURE / A. VAN UYTVANCK 62 64

Spain 2 : 3 Slovak Republic
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Club de Tenis Puente Romano, Marbella, Spain
Start times:
Day 1: 1115 hrs (0915 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1100 hrs (0900 hrs GMT)
Surface: Clay (Red Clay), Outdoor

R1 D. CIBULKOVA d. L. DOMINGUEZ-LINO 63 60
R2 S. SOLER-ESPINOSA vs D. HANTUCHOVA 76(5) 64
R3 D. CIBULKOVA d. SOLER-ESPINOSA 64 64
R4 D. HANTUCHOVA d. L. DOMINGUEZ-LINO 60 67(4) 64
R5 N. LLAGOSTERA VIVES / A. PARRA-SANTONJA d. M. RYBARYKOVA / A. SCHMIEDLOVA 60 67(7) 63

Germany 2 : 3 Australia
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Porsche Arena, Stuttgart, Germany
Start times:
Day 1: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Surface: Clay (Red Clay), Indoor

R1 S. STOSUR d. A. KERBER 76(1) 64
R2 J. GAJDOSOVA d. J. GOERGES 64 64
R3 S. STOSUR d. A. PETKOVIC 64 61
R4 A. KERBER d. O. ROGOWSKA 63 63
R5 J. GOERGES / A. PETKOVIC d. C. DELLACQUA / J.GAJDOSOVA 63 64
« Last Edit: April 22, 2012, 12:41:15 PM by conchita »
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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #10 on: April 22, 2012, 11:25:52 AM »
World Group II Playoffs
Winning nations qualify for World Group II in 2013
Losing nations contest Zone Groups in 2013 

France 5 : 0 Slovenia
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Palais des Sports, Besancon, France
Start times:
Day 1: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Surface: Hard (Acrylic), Indoor

R1 V. RAZZANO d. P. RAMPRE 26 64 64
R2 P. PARMENTIER d. N. KOLAR 62 63
R3 P. PARMENTIER d. P. RAMPRE 64 36 86
R4 S. FORETZ GACON d. N. KOLAR 76(6) 76(1)
R5 S. FORETZ GACON /  K. MLADENOVIC d. P. RAMPRE / K. SREBOTNIK 63 64

Switzerland 4 : 1 Belarus
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Complexe Sportive des Iles, Yverdon-les-Bains, Switzerland
Start times:
Day 1: 1200 hrs (1000 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1100 hrs (0900 hrs GMT)
Surface: Hard (Rebound Ace), Indoor

R1 O. GOVORTSOVA d. T. BACSINSZKY 64 64
R2 S. VOEGELE d. A. SASNOVICH 60 57 63
R3 S. VOEGELE d. O. GOVORTSOVA 61 61
R4 T. BACSINSZKY d. A. SASNOVICH 62 36 61
R5 B. BENCIC / A. SADIKOVIC d. D. LEBESHEVA / A. SASNOVICH 67(5) 76(7) 75

Sweden 4 : 1 Great Britain
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Borashallen, Boras, Sweden
Start times:
Day 1: 1400 hrs (1200 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1100 hrs (0900 hrs GMT)

R1 J. LARSSON d. E. BALTACHA 61 75
R2 S. ARVIDSSON d. A. KEOTHAVONG 61 64
R3 S. ARVIDSSON d. L. ROBSON 64 16 63
R4 J. LARSSON d. A. KEOTHAVONG 76(6) 36 63
R5 H.WATSON / E.BALTACHA d. E. ALLGURIN / H.MELANDER 76(3) 61

Argentina 4 : 1 China
Date: 21 Apr - 22 Apr 2012
Venue: Parque Roca, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Start times:
Day 1: 1030 hrs (1330 hrs GMT)
Day 2: 1045 hrs (1345 hrs GMT)
Surface: Clay (Red Clay), Outdoor

R1 P. ORMAECHEA d. Y. ZHOU 62 62
R2 F. MOLINERO d. Q. WANG 63 64
R3 P. ORMAECHEA d. Q. WANG 64 62 
R4 Y. ZHOU d. F. MOLINERO 76(1) 26 63
R5 M. AUROUX / M. IRIGOYEN d. C. LIANG / W. LIU 63 64
« Last Edit: April 22, 2012, 04:09:28 PM by conchita »
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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #11 on: April 22, 2012, 06:56:21 PM »
Good wins for Serena!  I know Mary Jo was glad to have her on the team! :))

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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #12 on: April 23, 2012, 10:34:49 AM »
Serena could be the No. 1 ranking if it were not for injuries.

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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #13 on: April 23, 2012, 04:19:12 PM »
Good to see Petra get her groove on :good:
1995 USO, 1997 USO, 2004 USO, 2005 RG, 2005 USO, 2006 RG, 2006 USO, 2007 USO, 2008 RG, 2008 USO, 2009 USO, 2010 USO, 2011 USO, 2012 USOhttp://www.gifsoup.com/view4/1856936/2005safin-o.gif
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Re: Fed Cup - World Group Semifinals & Playoffs - 21-22 april 2012
« Reply #14 on: April 23, 2012, 04:42:36 PM »
Good to see Petra get her groove on :good:

Yes, Petra Kvitova is one of the best in the world, she won Wimbledon last year.