Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

TENNIS

Aussies bag DC final slot

De Minaur broke a second time when the Finn hit a backhand into the net and consolidated to move 4-2 ahead as he hit his stride.

Alex de Minaur smashes his way past Emil Ruusuvuori, 6-4, 6-3, to power Australia past Finland for a place in the Davis Cup final. | LLUIS GENE/agence france-presse

MALAGA, Spain (AFP) — Alex de Minaur smoothly guided Australia into a second successive Davis Cup final with an assured 2-0 win over Finland on Friday in Malaga.

The world No. 12 wore down Emil Ruusuvuori in a 6-4, 6-3 straight sets triumph, after Alexei Popyrin beat Otto Virtanen 7-6 (7/5), 6-2 in the first singles rubber.

Australia, who last won the competition in 2003, will face Novak Djokovic’s Serbia or Jannik Sinner’s Italy in Sunday’s final.

“For us this cup is a priority, we do everything we can to represent Australia, with pride and passion,” De Minaur said.

“It’s not too bad to reach another final.”

Australia captain Lleyton Hewitt said reaching the final means “a hell of a lot” to him.

“Our boys dug really deep… we’re a tight-knit unit and we’ve given ourselves another opportunity on Sunday,” he added.

De Minaur produced a remarkable comeback against the Czech Republic in a rollercoaster classic to help his country reach the semi-finals but had a gentler ride this time at the Martin Carpena arena.

Although he and Hewitt have been highly critical of the revamped Davis Cup format, the 24-year-old expertly steered his team into their 49th final.

The 28-time champions, behind only the United States, ended Finland’s fairytale run with little fuss, and the captains agreed not to play the deciding doubles.

Nordic fans outnumbered those in green and gold, just as they did for their superb last eight victory over reigning champions Canada on Tuesday, but this time left disappointed.

Finland’s number one, Ruusuvuori, 69th in the world, missed the Canada win with a shoulder problem and he had heavy lifting to do after Virtanen’s defeat.

Ruusuvuori exchanged breaks with De Minaur, with the Australian finally converting his sixth break point in the third game to get back on serve and never looked back.

De Minaur broke a second time when the Finn hit a backhand into the net and consolidated to move 4-2 ahead as he hit his stride.

Ruusuvuori conceded a third break by slapping a forehand into the net and despite breaking back with a lovely drop shot, De Minaur served out to wrap up the set.

At the start of the second he saved a break point against an aggressive Ruusuvuori and then broke himself for a 2-1 lead, which he protected.

De Minaur clinched victory with a superb backhand winner, hit on the rise.

Hewitt, who played in Australia’s last Davis Cup win 20 years ago, knows the final will be tough, whether it is against world number one Djokovic’s Serbia, or number four ranked Sinner and Italy.

“It’s tough either way,” said Australia’s captain.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like

SPORTS

Manny Pacquiao knows his time is up. This was the keen observation made by a longtime member of his training team who spent dinner...

ESPORTS

The dynamic duo of Johnmar “OhMyV33nus” Villaluna and Danerie James “Wise” del Rosario is back with a bang after leading Blacklist International to a...

SPORTS

The University Athletic Association of the Philippines will have a full calendar of sports events for Season 85 starting 1 October. UAAP President Fr....

ESPORTS

ECHO has revealed its roster for the upcoming M4 Mobile Legends World Championship to be held 1-15 January 2023 in Jakarta, Indonesia. The seven...

SPORTS

It’s going to be business as usual as the Philippine Basketball Association will not stop its on-court activities when it gives way for the...

SPORTS

It doesn’t look as if newly-crowned Melvin Jerusalem will get the luxury of defending his minimumweight crown against a handpicked rival after the World...

SPORTS

Mitchell, meanwhile, is a six-foot shooting guard frowm Hartford University.

SPORTS

Legendary boxing referee Carlos ‘Sonny’ Padilla was recently inducted into the Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame. Famous for serving as the third man in...

Copyright © DAILY TRIBUNE