Thursday, November 4, 2021

Aussies, Swiss advance to Billie Jean King Cup semis

Alja Tomljanovic, the runner-up in the 2017 Sacramento (Calif.) Challenger and a
Wimbledon quarterfinalist this year, lifted Australia to a 2-1 victory over Belarus
today in the Billie Jean King Cup in Prague. 2017 photo by Rob Vomund
   Australia defeated Belarus 2-1 today to reach the semifinals of the Billie Jean King Cup, formerly Fed Cup, in Prague.
   Storm Sanders beat Yuliya Hatouka, making her Cup debut, 6-3, 6-3 to give the Aussies a 1-0 lead. Alja Tomljanovic, who reached her first Grand Slam quarterfinal at Wimbledon this year, then topped Aliaksandra Sasnovich 4-6, 6-2, 6-3. 
   Sanders and compatriot Daria Gavrilova won the doubles title in the 2014 Sacramento (Calif.) Challenger. Three years later, Tomljanovich advanced to the Sacramento singles final.
   The top two singles players in the world, Ashleigh Barty of Australia and Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus, and former world No. 1 Victoria Azarenka of Belarus skipped the Billie Jean King Cup. 
   In Friday's semifinals (Tennis Channel), the United States will face the Russian Tennis Federation at 2:30 a.m. PDT, and Australia will play Switzerland, a 2-1 winner over the Czech Republic, at 9 a.m.
   WTA Tour — No. 1 seed Mayar Sherif (Fresno State, 2015-16) of Egypt dismissed Katharina Gerlach of Germany 6-3, 6-2 in the second round of the Argentina Open on clay in Buenos Aires. It's the first WTA tournament in Argentina in 34 years.
   USTA Pro Circuit — In a second-round matchup of qualifiers, Moyuka Uchijima of Japan defeated Maegan Manasse, an assistant coach at the University of California, Berkeley and ex-Bears All-American, 6-4, 6-2.
   No. 1 doubles seeds Anna Danilina of Kazakhstan and Valeriya Strakhova of Ukraine beat Fernanda Contreras Gomez of Mexico and Maribella Zamarripa of St. Helena, Calif., in the Napa region 6-1, 6-4 to reach the quarterfinals.
   Meanwhile, No. 2 seed Sho Shimabukuro of Japan dominated qualifier Keenan Mayo of Sacramento, Calif., 6-2, 6-2 in the second round of a $15,000 tournament in Fayetteville, Ark.
   In the second round of the $15,000 Dick Savitt Futures in Ithaca, N.Y., No. 6 seed Luke Johnson of Great Britain beat Connor Farren, a San Francisco Bay Area product, 6-7 (3), 6-3, 6-2.
   Abraham Asaba of Ghana and Guy Orly Iradukunda of Burundi eliminated Farren and Jesse Flores of Costa Rica 6-2, 7-6 (0) to reach the quarterfinals.
   College — No. 2 seed Arthur Fery of Stanford dispatched Jordan Hasson of Oklahoma 6-3, 6-3 in the first round of the ITA National Fall Championships in San Diego.
   Fery also advanced in doubles with Alexandre Rotsaert; they are seeded fourth. Their teammates, Timothy Sah and Max Basing, are scheduled to meet third-seeded Marcus McDaniel (Vacaville, Calif.) and Andres Martin of Georgia Tech in the second round on Friday.
   In women's singles, Stanford freshman Connie Ma, from Dublin in the Bay Area, ousted No. 7 seed Snow Han of USC 6-3, 6-1, but another Cardinal freshman, Alexandra Yepifanova, lost to No. 5 seed Eryn Cayetano of USC 7-5, 6-4.
   Mariia Kozyreva of Saint Mary's in the San Francisco Bay Area eliminated Anna Riedmiller of Denver 6-4, 6-3.
   Advancing in doubles were Ma and Angelica Blake, and Cal's Jessica Alsola (Fresno, Calif.) and Erin Richardson. Yepifanova and Niluka Madurawe (Sunnyvale in the Bay Area) lost their opener.

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