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TENNIS

German ladies net Fed Cup final appearance

Angelique Kerber put Germany into their first Fed Cup final in 22 years with a fighting victory over Australia's Samantha Stosur in the semi-final in Brisbane on Sunday.

German ladies net Fed Cup final appearance
Germany's Angelique Kerber celebrates her victory over Australia's Sam Stosur with teammates after their match in the Fed Cup semi-final. AFP Photo: Patrick Hamilton

World number seven Kerber fought back from dropping the opening set to beat former US Open champion Stosur 4-6, 6-0, 6-4 in two hours 14 minutes to give Germany an unassailable 3-0 lead over Australia.

The Australian pair of Casey Dellacqua and Ashleigh Barty prevented a wipe-out when they claimed the "dead" doubles rubber 6-2, 6-7 (5/7), 10-2 over Julia Goerges and Anna-Lena Grönefeld.

The final result was Germany 3, Australia 1. Germany will play either the Czech Republic or Italy in the final.

Left-hander Kerber showed great resilience to bounce back in the pivotal singles rubber and win seven games straight after the opening set to turn around the momentum, fighting off the 19th-ranked Stosur to take victory and put Germany into this year's final.

Germany last won the competition in 1992 when Steffi Graf and Anke Huber starred in the team which defeated Spain.

The Germans took a firm grip on the semi-final winning Saturday's opening two singles rubbers in the best-of-five match tie.

"It's a really special moment for us. We are all working hard to get to the final and win against Australia," Kerber said.

It was Kerber's first win in three encounters against Stosur.

"It was tough and I knew I had to play my best tennis to beat Sam because she is a Grand Slam champion," Kerber said.

She added; "After the first set I was just thinking about playing for the team and I was fighting until the last point. I was a little bit nervous on the last points but now I'm just happy. After 1992 we are now in the final and it means a lot for Germany and it's an honour for all of us."

Dellacqua's singles match with Andrea Petkovic was not played.
 

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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.