Russia beats Switzerland to win Billie Jean King Cup for 5th time

November 6, 2021
Russia beats Switzerland to win Billie Jean King Cup for 5th time
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Russia won both singles matches to defeat Switzerland 2-0 in the final of the Billie Jean King Cup on Saturday to claim the trophy for the fifth time.

Liudmila Samsonova rallied to capture the decisive point with a 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 victory over Tokyo Olympics singles champion Belinda Bencic.

Daria Kasatkina gave Russia a 1-0 lead with a 6-2, 6-4 victory against Jil Teichmann.

The competition was formerly known as the Fed Cup.

In a dominant display, Kasatkina blasted a forehand winner to earn a break point in the seventh game of the second set that she converted for a 4-3 lead. She was not able to hold her serve in the following game but got another break for 5-4 before serving the match out on her first match point.

The Russian stormed the opening set, breaking Teichmann three times and dropping her serve once.

“I think the beginning was very important, we were both nervous but I managed little bit better the nerves,” Kasatkina said.

It was the second victory for the Russian in the tournament after beating Canada’s Carol Zhao in the group stage to improve her record in the competition to 5-1 while Teichmann recorded her first loss after three wins.

‘Amazing feeling’

“An amazing feeling,” Kasatkina said. “I won the first match [in the group stage], now I play in the final and I’m happy I’ve brought this very important point to my team.”

Russia reached its first final since 2015 in the competition they won in 2004, 2005, 2007 and 2008.

The Swiss reached their first final since finishing runner-up in 1998, their only final appearance

The 12 teams in the finals were divided into four groups of three teams. Only the group winners advanced to Friday’s semifinals.

Russia dominated Group A in the tournament after victories over defending champion France and Canada before eliminating the United States in the semifinal.

The U.S. is the most successful nation in the competition with 18 trophies.

Switzerland advanced to the semis from Group D, considered the toughest in the tournament, defeating both the Czech Republic and Germany on the way.

In the semis, the Swiss swept Australia 2-0, winning both singles matches.

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