Oh so close but what a run though by the Aussies after they were unfortunately eliminated from the United Cup semi-finals in the early hours of Sunday morning by Germany, having lost the mixed deciding doubles match 1-2.
Ajla Tomjlanovic fired off really well in the first set, but couldn’t find a way to kick on and hold Angelique Kerber back who was amazing from the set down to bring home a two-set win at the tiebreak (6-4, 2-6 & 6-7 – 7-9 tie). Meanwhile, Alex De Minaur gave the home fans so much hope to keep that run alive. He too bounced back from that close opening set loss with the win v Alexander Zverev (5-7, 6-3, 6-4) to level the semi-final series at 1-1 for Australia where his individual brilliance on the court will see him being ranked World No.10 in the ATP ladder next week. Let’s hope he can have the best Australian Open campaign yet starting next Sunday.
The tables have then turned on Storm Hunter & Matt Ebden to bring it home against Zverev again & Laura Siegemund for a spot to face Poland in the Final who defeated France the other day in a 3-0 whitewash. Now this was such an unreal deciding mixed doubles tie to watch, even though it did go past midnight. They all won each set in the first two (Germany in Stage 1 & Australia in Stage 2) before it went all the way through the best of 10 as Zverev’s decision to stay on has paid off for Germany that broke the hearts of the Aussie team & their fans itself on home turf at Ken Rosewall Arena. The final score was 6-2 – 2-7 tie, 7-6 – 7-2 tie & 13-15.
And speaking on Team Germany, they too have went on to become this year’s United Cup Champions after USA. Yes, these series of finals ties v Poland did end up going just past midnight but gotta say that Zverev has saved the day once again.
Now He almost lost the match and even the final at one stage by Hubert Hurkacz after Iga Swiatek was too for Kerber (6-3, 6-0) earlier in the evening before he kept his country’s hopes alive going into the championship-winning doubles decider after three hours of play (7-6 with 7-3 tie, 6-7 with 6-8 tie & 4-6). Not only he and Siegmund has played really well right through the every end v Swiatek and Hurkacz again, but they too found both the finish line & the United Cup trophy via the final set tiebreak (4-6, 7-5 & 4-10).
All that’s left to come this week is the Adelaide International, Kooyong Classic, Women’s Hobart International & Men’s Auckland ASB Classic in New Zealand before the main event arrives for the Australian Open at Melbourne Park that will take 15 days beginning on Sunday.