Taiwan claimed their first victory of the round-robin stage of the Fed Cup with a 3-0 victory over South Korea at the National Tennis Center in Astana, Kazakhstan, on Thursday, but they may come to rue the upset loss to Uzbekistan in their first rubber.
In the singles matches in Group B of the Group 1 Asia/Oceania tie, Taiwan’s Chan Chin-wei defeated Lee So-ra of South Korea 4-6, 6-1, 6-2 and fellow Taiwanese Chang Kai-chen defeated Han Sung-lee 6-0, 4-6, 6-3.
Chang and Lee Hua-chen completed the whitewash with a 6-2, 6-4 win in the doubles against South Korea’s Kang Seo-kyung and Yoo Mi.
In the other rubber in Group B, Uzbekistan, who defeated Taiwan on Wednesday, were in a strong position to earn a promotion playoff spot after they beat China 2-1.
Uzbekistan’s Nigina Abduraimova beat China’s Tang Hao-chen 6-3, 6-2 and Akgul Amanmuradova defeated Wang Qiang 6-1, 7-5 in the singles matches.
The Chinese duo earned a consolation victory against Uzbekistan’s Arina Folts and Sabina Sharipova 6-1, 6-3 in the doubles.
In Group A, the hosts and favorites got off to a perfect start when Ksenia Pervak beat Thailand’s Nudnida Luangnam 6-0, 6-1 in the singles, but the second match produced the shock of the tournament, Thailand’s world No. 148 Luksika Kumkhum defeating world No. 32 Yaroslava Shvedova 0-6, 6-4, 6-4.
The Thai duo of Noppawan Lertcheewakarn and Varatchava Wongteanchai then won the first set of the doubles 6-2, but the shock was not meant to be, as Shvedova and Galina Voskoboeva regrouped to win the final two sets 6-2, 6-0 and advance to the promotion playoff, much to the relief of the home supporters.
In the final matches in Group B yesterday, Taiwan were set to face China, while a win for Uzbekistan against South Korea would see them face Kazakhstan in the playoff today.