Great Britain maintain Fed Cup perfection to set up Croatia play-off

Great Britain maintain Fed Cup perfection to set up Croatia play-off

10 February 2017 / 16:44
Great Britain will play Croatia for the chance of promotion to Fed Cup World Group II as their flawless record showed no sign of stopping in victory over Turkey.

Having already eased past Portugal and Latvia 3-0, Anne Keothavong's team showed no signs of slowing down in their final Pool C tie, getting the better of Turkey by the same scoreline in Estonia.

Heather Watson kept up her own perfect streak to complete her third straight sets victory, though resilience was the key for Johanna Konta in her come-from-behind win.

But with Latvia's victory over Portugal already confirming their case in Saturday's showcase, Laura Robson and Jocelyn Rae ensured standards were not set to slip, prevailing 6-2 6-2 in the doubles.
And having dropped just six games in six victorious sets after this 6-0 6-1 success, Watson heads into the weekend with a mountain of confidence prior to facing the No.2 seeds.

"I felt really good out there today," Watson said of victory over Ipek Soylu. "I had a lot of energy and I thought my focus was fully engaged in every single point. Whether I was down 30-0 or 40-0 in a game, I was coming up with really good tennis to come back.

"I think she felt that pressure a lot and the score was 6-0 6-1, but it felt a lot closer than that. She's a good player and today I just felt that I was pretty flawless."

For the third day in succession, Watson's impressive start was just the beginning in a strong display from the Great Britain side.

That was followed up by a battling performance from world number ten Konta, fighting back from losing her first set of the competition.

But with that 7-5 reverse against Cagla Buyukakcay firmly in the back of her mind, the Australian Open quarter-finalist turned on the style to take the rubber with set wins of 6-4 and 6-3.

"Right now I'm feeling really happy to have come through that," Konta said. "It wasn't easy and she definitely played herself into the match. To come through that and give us the opportunity to go into the play-off on Saturday I'm very happy for us and the team.

"I feel a little bit drained more than anything right now, but I'm really looking forward to recovering and then coming back to cheer on the girls in the doubles."

And with a third successive victory secured, Robson and Rae proved their doubles capabilities in emphatic style, beating Ayla Aksu and Pemra Ozgen 6-2 6-2.

It completed what has been an excellent recovery from losing their first set of the week on Thursday, breaking six times across the match to add gloss to an excellent week so far in Tallinn.

Sportsbeat 2017

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