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TENNIS

Germany revels in ‘boom boom’ Lisicki fever

Wimbledon finalist Sabine Lisicki has caught the imagination of tennis fans in her homeland as her 6-4, 2-6, 9-7 semi-final win over Agnieszka Radwanska saw her become the first German in 14 years to reach a Grand Slam final.

Germany revels in 'boom boom' Lisicki fever
Tennis fans flock around German star Sabine Lisicki. Photo: DPA

“Super Sabine! It was an unbelievable fight, it was great how she kept her calm and nerve against Radwanska, especially after she was 3-0 down in the third set,” Steffi Graf, who reached the 1999 Wimbledon final, wrote on Facebook.

“We will all cheer for you in the final and keep our fingers crossed.”

Graf, 44, who lost to Lindsay Davenport in the 1999 Wimbledon final, was the last German to win a Grand Slam title when she won the 1996 US Open, but Germany is enjoying having a new tennis star reach a major final.

The headline “Boom-Boom-Bine!”, a tribute to the nickname “Boom-Boom-Becker!” given to former German star Boris Becker, has appeared on several newspapers and the 45-year-old is delighted to see his compatriot charm Wimbledon.

“Sabine Lisicki rocks! But you have to do it again, baby,” tweeted Becker, a three-time Wimbledon champion, as Lisicki faces France’s Marion Bartoli in Saturday’s final after Thursday’s semi-final win.

Lisicki’s Fed Cup team-mate Andrea Petkovic called on Lisicki to become a Wimbledon champion, having reached the 2011 semi-finals and beaten world

number one Serena Williams in the fourth round en route to this year’s final in southwest London.

“Wow, Bine! We are all mega proud! Bring the title to Germany,” wrote Petkovic.

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TENNIS

Nadal beats Zverev to set Spain up for Davis Cup decider with Germany

Rafael Nadal kept Spain's Davis Cup hopes alive by beating Alexander Zverez on Sunday in the fourth rubber of their quarter-final against Germany.

Nadal beats Zverev to set Spain up for Davis Cup decider with Germany
Germany's Alexander Zverev walks on the pitch during the Davis Cup quarter-final tennis match against Spain's Rafa Nadal at the bullring of Valencia, on Sunday. JOSE JORDAN / AFP
Nadal's 6-1, 6-4, 6-4 win in Valencia draws the tie level at 2-2, with Spanish world number 33 David Ferrer up against Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber in the fifth and decisive match.
 
Two breaks in each set were enough for Nadal to seal an impressively comfortable victory over Zverev in what was only the 31-year-old's second outing since returning from a hip injury.
 
Nadal was forced to retire at the Australian Open in January but, back on his favoured clay, the 16-time grand slam champion showed little sign of rust against Zverev, whom he has now beaten four times out of four.
 
It was also the 24th consecutive match Nadal has won in Davis Cup.
 
He beat Kohlschreiber in straight sets on Friday after Zverev had overcome Ferrer. Germany then took a 2-1 lead when Tim Puetz and Jan-Lennard Struff won the doubles rubber against Spain's Feliciano and Marc Lopez.