Sun, Jan 08, 2012 - Page 20 News List

Czech Republic cruise to Hopman title


Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova and Tomas Berdych had straight-set singles victories over France yesterday to give the Czech Republic their second Hopman Cup title.

Kvitova won the final three games of the first set and went on to beat Marion Bartoli 7-5, 6-1, while Berdych was perfect in a first-set tiebreaker and beat Richard Gasquet 7-6 (7/0), 6-4. The Czech pair were unbeaten in singles through three matches leading to the final.

The mixed doubles match was not played because the championship was decided in singles.

The Czechs won the eight-country mixed teams title for the first time in 1994 when Jana Novotna and Petr Korda beat Germany in the final.

France have never won the Hopman Cup, although they lost the final in 1998 to Slovakia. France have played 18 times in the 24-year history of the tournament.

Kvitova could overtake Caroline Wozniacki for the No. 1 ranking if she wins the Sydney International next week.

Meanwhile, Fish looked unlikely to face any significant sanctions, despite an ugly on-court confrontation with Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov on Friday.

Fish, 30, appeared upset with Dimitrov after the youngster thrashed him 6-2, 6-1 in the men’s singles rubber of the clash between the US and Bulgaria.

The loss to the world No. 76 capped a poor week for Fish, who is ranked eighth in the world, but won just one of his three singles matches at the event.

It was unclear what sparked the feud, although the out-of-form Fish was issued with a code violation during the match for spitting toward Bulgarian fans.

Tensions then escalated significantly during the subsequent mixed doubles, when Fish and Dimitrov argued during a change of ends, leading the match referee, Soren Friemel, to intervene.

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