Tennis Roundup: USA, Italy Reach United Cup Final

Tennis Roundup: USA, Italy Reach United Cup Final
Jessica Pegula and Taylor Fritz of the USA compete in the City Final match against Harriet Dart and Daniel Evans of Great Britain during day seven of the 2023 United Cup at Ken Rosewall Arena in Sydney, Australia, on Jan. 4, 2023. (Brendon Thorne/Getty Images)
Field Level Media

Taylor Fritz edged Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz 7–6 (5), 7–6 (5) on Saturday to push Team United States into the United Cup championship match against Team Italy in Sydney, Australia.

Fritz’s hard-fought victory gave the U.S. an insurmountable 3–0 lead in the Final Four of the inaugural 18-country, mixed-team competition. Fritz weathered Hurkacz’s 17 aces by winning 88 percent of his own first-service points (44 of 50) in a match where neither player’s serve was broken.

The Americans completed the 5–0 sweep with Madison Keys beating Magda Linette 6–4, 6–2 and Fritz and Jessica Pegula rallying to defeat Lukasz Kubot and Alicja Rosolska 6–7 (5), 6–4, 10–6 in mixed doubles.

The Italians advanced to the final with a 4–1 victory against Team Greece. Lucia Bronzetti clinched the win with a 6–2, 6–3 win against Valentini Grammatikopoulou.

Adelaide International 1

Top-seeded Novak Djokovic of Serbia fought through a left leg injury and defeated No. 3 Daniil Medvedev of Russia 6–3, 6–4 to reach the final in Adelaide, Australia.

Djokovic, who used a medical timeout for treatment on his hamstring, saved all three break points he faced in the battle of former World No. 1 players. He will battle for his 92nd career title Sunday against American Sebastian Korda.

The unseeded Korda was leading Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka 7–6 (5), 1–0 when Nishioka was forced to retire due to a right hip injury. Djokovic, 35, and Korda, 22, are meeting for the first time.

No. 2 seed Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus will face Czech teenager Linda Noskova in the women’s final. Sabalenka cruised to a 6–3, 6–2 winner against Romania’s Irina-Camelia Begu. Noskova, an 18-year-old qualifier, knocked off top-seeded Ons Jabeur of Tunisia 6–3, 1–6, 6–3. Jabeur took a medical timeout in the second set for a lower-back injury.

ASB Classic

Top-seeded Coco Gauff breezed to a 6–0, 6–2 win over No. 7 Danka Kovinic of Montenegro to reach the final in Auckland, New Zealand.

The 18-year-old American saved three of four break points and converted six of her 15 break chances. Seeking her third career title, Gauff will battle unseeded Spaniard Rebeka Masarova for the trophy on Sunday.

Masarova was a 6–3, 6–3 semifinal winner against Belgium’s Ysaline Bonaventure. Masarova delivered nine aces and saved two of three break points to reach her first career final.

Tata Open Maharashtra

Tallon Griekspoor of the Netherlands rallied for a 4–6, 7–5, 6–3 win against France’s Benjamin Bonzi to claim his first ATP Tour title in Pune, India.

In a matchup of unseeded players both appearing in their maiden final, Griekspoor fired 17 aces and saved three of four break points.

Up a set, Bonzi was leading 5–4 in the second set before Griekspoor won three straight games to force a deciding set. Bonzi lost his serve in the third game of the final set and never recovered.