Great Britain beat Spain to end Australia’s title chances

Despite their lead, the Brits still had work to do on Sunday when Harriet Dart lost to Paula Badosa 7-6 (8-6), 6-7 (7-5), 1-6.

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Dart belied their world rankings of No. 98 to push Badosa to the top, at one point just two points from winning the game in a thrilling tie-breaker in the second set.

But the No.13 steeled itself when it mattered most, running away in the third set to put Spain back in the tie.

While Nadal waited in the wings for a potentially crucial fifth rubber, much hung on what Ramos-Vinolas, a replacement for Pablo Carreno Busta, could do against Evans.

After a sluggish first set, the Spaniard revived in the second set and Evans, a disappointing first loser to Aussie Jason Kubler, looked nervous going into the third set.

Dan Evans celebrates with his team mates after defeating Spain's Albert Ramos-Vinolas in their Group D match on Sunday night in Sydney.

Dan Evans celebrates with his team mates after defeating Spain’s Albert Ramos-Vinolas in their Group D match on Sunday night in Sydney.Credit:AP

However, the world No. 27 secured a crucial break in game seven and eventually served out the contest with a 6-3, 1-6, 6-3 win, making the mixed doubles a dead rubber.

“I don’t feel my strongest, but I have a great team behind me,” Evans said.

“It helps that it’s not a regular tournament; It’s hard to throw in the towel when you’ve got so much behind you.”

Petra Kvitova earlier defeated Laura Siegemund 6-4, 6-2 to secure her second consecutive win of the tournament as the Czechs took a 3-0 lead in a draw against Germany.

Oscar Otte gave Germany their first win as he defeated Dalibor Svrcina before Siegemund and Alexander Zverev combined in a consolation win over Marie Bouzkova and Jiri Lehecka in doubles.

The Czechs have one win and one loss from two meetings after their opening defeat by the United States, who are next in Group C against Germany.

Bulgaria’s Alexandar Lazarov and Isabella Shinikova won the first-ever United Cup mixed doubles decision in Perth, securing a match point to bring Belgium’s David Goffin and Elise Mertens in for a 3-2 Group A triumph.

Casper Ruud sealed Norway’s only win in their 4-1 Group E defeat by Brazil when he defeated Thiago Monteiro 6-3, 6-2. Poland took a 3-1 lead over Kazakhstan in Group B, with Hubert Hurkacz and Magda Linette winning their games in Brisbane.

Croatia ended Argentina’s chances of progressing from Perth, taking a 3-0 lead to give them their second consecutive Group F defeat.

The United Cup will be played in three cities, with two group winners from each venue meeting to determine who will reach the round of four.

The fourth semi-finalist will be the runner-up in the “City Finals” with the best record from their three games. Sydney will host the final on January 8th.

AAP, Reuters

The United Cup is broadcast on 9Network with every game available live 9Now.

https://www.smh.com.au/sport/tennis/britain-beat-spain-to-end-australia-s-united-cup-chances-20230102-p5c9rv.html?ref=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_source=rss_sport Great Britain beat Spain to end Australia’s title chances

Ryan Sederquist

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