Saturday, February 8, 2020

Mattek-Sands, Kenin lift U.S. over Latvia in Fed Cup

Bethanie Mattek-Sands celebrates after shocking Venus Williams in the first
round of the Mubadala Silicon Valley Classic in San Jose, Calif., last July.
Photo by Mal Taam
   Sofia Kenin and Bethanie Mattek-Sands gave the United States a 3-2 victory over gutsy Latvia tonight in Fed Cup qualifying.
   Kenin, 21, and Mattek-Sands, 34, defeated Jelena Ostapenko and Anastasija Sevastova 6-4, 6-0 in the deciding match in Everett, Wash. Kenin won her first Grand Slam title last week in Australian Open singles. Mattek-Sands has fallen from No. 1 in doubles in 2017 to No. 20.
   The United States advanced to the 12-team Fed Cup Finals, April 14-19 in Budapest.
   Earlier today, Ostapenko, the 2017 French Open champion, beat Kenin 6-3, 2-6, 6-2, and Sevastova stunned Serena Williams, a part-time Silicon Valley resident, 7-6 (5), 3-6, 7-6 (4) in 2 hours, 25 minutes.
   Williams, 38, suffered her first Fed Cup singles loss after 14 victories. She had trounced Sevastova 6-3, 6-0 in 66 minutes in the semifinals of the 2018 U.S. Open in their only previous meeting.
   Williams' defeat was reminiscent of her 6-4, 6-7 (2), 7-5 loss to Wang Qiang of China in the third round of the recent Australian Open. Williams had crushed Wang 6-1, 6-0 in 44 minutes in the U.S. Open quarterfinals last September in their only previous meeting.
   ITF World Tennis Tour – Top-seeded Caroline Dolehide, a 21-year-old native of Hinsdale, Ill., and Maria Sanchez, a 30-year-old product of Modesto, Calif., won the doubles title in the $100,000 Dow Tennis Classic in Midland, Mich.
   Dolehide, a U.S. Open doubles semifinalist with Vania King last year, and Sanchez outclassed second-seeded Valeria Savinykh of Russia and Yanina Wickmayer of Belgium 6-3, 6-4.

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