U.S. Loses, Federer Wins in Davis Cup; Weekend Dish
Surface: indoor hard
Seeds: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Philipp Kohlschreiber, Marcel Granollers, Florian Mayer, Andreas Seppi, Jarkko Nieminen, Gael Monfils, Nikolay Davydenko
Floaters: Gilles Muller, James Blake, Nicolas Mahut, Xavier “X-Man” Malisse
Notes: Not a lot of opening-round matches to grab your attention, or after that; wildcards went to Paul-Henri Mathieu, Davydenko, and Albano Olivetti of France; returning champs in the field are Tsonga (2011) and Monfils (2009).
St. Petersburg Open
St. Petersburg, Russia
Surface: indoor hard
Seeds: Mikhail Youzhny, Denis Istomin, Martin Klizan, Fabio Fognini, Lukas Lacko, Yen-Hsun Lu, Guillermo “G-Lo” Garcia-Lopez, Jurgen Zopp
Notes: Istomin the No. 2 seed, and Klizan No. 3? Yikes, no one playing the week after Davis Cup; Youzhny (2004) the lone returning champ in the field.
KDB Korea Open
Seeds: Caroline Wozniacki, Maria Kirilenko, Kaia Kanepi, Nadia Petrova, Julia Goerges, Varvara Lepchenko, Klara Zakopalova, Ekaterina Makarova
Floaters: Arantxa Rus
Notes: The slumping Woz against the former world No. 1 junior Rus, could be good watching; returning champs in the field are Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez (2011), Kimiko Date-Krumm (2009), and Maria Kirilenko (2008).
GRC Bank Guangzhou International Women’s Open 2012
Seeds: Marion Bartoli, Zheng Jie, Sorana C�rstea, Urszula Radwanska, Chanelle Scheepers, Monica Niculescu, Peng Shuai, Alize Cornet
Floaters: Laura Robson
Notes: The Brit Robson could face (2) Jie in the second round; no returning champs in the field.
Davis Cup Results
World Ground Semifinals
Spain d. USA 3-1
David Ferrer clinches a spot in the final for Spain with a win in the first match on Sunday over John Isner in four sets.
Czech Republic d. Argentina 3-2
Tomas Berdych clinches the tie for the Czechs in the first match on Sunday, beating Argentine Carlos Berlocq in straight sets.
World Group Playoffs
Kazakhstan d. Uzbekistan 3-1
Mike Kukushkin clinches the tie on the first match on Sunday, beating Denis Istomin in four.
Germany d. Australia 3-2
The Aussies led 2-1 going into Sunday, but Bernard Tomic and Lleyton Hewitt drop two on Sunday as the Germans move into the World Group. Look for Lleyton to retire at the 2013 Aussie Open.
Israel d. Japan 3-2
The Japanese win the first match on Sunday to stretch it to a fifth, but unheralded Amir Weintrab tops Go Soeda to send Israel into the World Group in 2013.
Belgium d. Sweden 5-0
The once-mighty Swedes mighty no more. Time to buy some Soviet satellite players.
Canada d. South Africa 4-1
Wayne Ferreira is a distant memory as the no-name South Africans get housed by the Canucks.
Brazil d. Russia 4-0
Are you kidding us? Brazil sweeps the former powerhouse Russia to claim a spot in the World Group behind Thomaz Bellucci and Rogerio Dutra Silva. Igor Andreev and Teymuraz gabashvili take it on the chin for Russia. Time to bring Safin and Y-Man out of retirement.
Italy d. Chile 4-1
Andreas Seppi and Fabio Fognini propel Italy into the World Group over the struggling Chileans.
Switzerland d. Netherlands 3-2
Roger Federer and Stan Wawrinka lose the Saturday doubles, but Federer clinches in the first Sunday singles to send the red cross back into the World Group.
Flipkens Beats Hradecka for WTA Quebec City Title
Belgian Kirsten Flipkens won her first career title at the Bell Challenge in Quebec City on Sunday, defeating Lucie Hradecka 6-1, 7-5.
“I wasn’t supposed to come here, but then a few people pulled out and I got into the main draw, so I said hey, I’ll go to Quebec City. I changed my plans and here I am,” Flipkens said.
During the week Flipkens beat No. 1 seed Dominika Cibulkova, No. 3 seed Mona Barthel, then the No. 8 seed Hradecka.
Hradecka fell to 0-5 in WTA finals.
Begu Stops Teen to Win WTA Tashkent Open
Irina-Camelia Begu defeated 16-year-old Donna Vekic 6-4, 6-4 to win the Tashkent Open.
“My service is what got me through — Donna played very well and I was happy to break her in both sets,” Begu said. “I was a little worried when she came back from 4-2 to level the score 4-4 in the second set, but I managed to break her back immediately to take a 5-4 lead, and then I served it out.”
Vekic qualified to the main draw and was the youngest player in six years to reach a WTA final.
“I was ready for this final, but Irina played very well and deserved to win today,” Vekic said. “I had my chances in the second set when I broke her to get back to 4-4, but I hurried a little bit on my serve and she broke me right back.”
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