Fritz and Keys get the job done, USA through to United Cup final

The United States are in the final of the United Cup after their 5-0 victory over Poland on Saturday

Taylor Fritz and Jessie Pegula at the United Cup AI/Reuters/Panoramic

The US completed a clean sweep against Poland in the semi-finals of the first ever United Cup. After the victories of Jessica Pegula, who made the world No 1 Iga Swiatek cry, and Frances Tiafoe on Friday, Taylor Fritz put an end to the suspense on Saturday by defeating Hubert Hurkacz in two tiebreaks, 7-6 (5), 7-6 (5).

The American, ranked ninth in the world, thus gave the US a 3-0 lead and a place against either Greece or Italy on Sunday to try to lift the cup.

The match between Fritz and Hurkacz, ranked tenth in the ATP rankings, was mostly played on serve, with no breaks on the Ken Rosewall Arena in Sydney during one hour and 44 minutes of play. With 11 aces and 88% of points won on his first serve, the Pole saved four break points. For his part, the American was able to count on his 17 aces and 82% of points won on his first serve to avert the danger on two occasions.

Fritz more solid in crunch moments

To win this match, you had to be solid when it mattered most, and it was Fritz who came out on top. In the first tie-break, both players won every point on their respective serves until the American moved ahead 6-5. Hurkacz was then the first to crack, at the worst of times, to leave the first set to his opponent.

It was essentially the same scenario in the second set, with a tiebreak won 7-5 by Fritz, who took the last three points of the match. Beaten by Hurkacz in their last meeting in Canada in 2019, the American got his revenge and now leads 2-1 in the head-to-head.

“I’ve played with Team USA a lot. I think it’s a huge advantage this time having the girls on our team because it makes the whole team so much stronger, so I’m super-excited going into the finals, I think we’ve been the favourites all week,” explained Fritz after the match.

After the 25-year-old’s victory, Madison Keys dominated Magda Linette, ranked 48th in the WTA rankings, in two sets (6-4, 6-2) to give the United States a 4-0 lead before Fritz then returned to the court with Jessica Pegula to bring Team USA a fifth point by defeating the Kubot/Rosolska pair in mixed doubles (6-7, 6-4, 10-6).

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