Great Britain and Australia won matches Thursday to advance to the semifinals of the Billie Jean King Cup.
The day’s dramatic finish occurred in Group C, where Great Britain earned a 3-0 win over Spain. All three teams in the group, which also included Kazakhstan, finished with 1-1 records, but the British advanced with the sweep of Spain giving them a super record in individual matches won.
Australia had a much easier time advancing out of Group B, topping the group with a 2-0 mark after a 3-0 victory over Belgium on Thursday.
The tournament, formerly known as the Fed Cup, features 12 teams divided into four groups for round-robin play of series consisting of two singles matches and one doubles match. The group winners advance to the semifinals.
After Great Britain’s Heather Watson routed Spain’s Nuria Parrizas Diaz 6-0, 6-2 and Great Britain’s Harriet Dart topped Spain’s Paula Badosa 6-3, 6-4, the group title hinged on the doubles match. The British pair of Alicia Barnett and Olivia Nicholls got past Spain’s Aliona Bolsova and Rebeka Masarova 7-6 (5), 6-2.
Australia’s Storm Sanders crushed Belgium’s Alison Van Uytvanck 6-2, 6-2, and Australia’s Ajla Tomljanovic got a win when Belgium’s Elise Mertens retired due to a shoulder ailment while trailing 4-6, 6-4, 3-0. Sanders and Samantha Stosur capped the sweep with a 6-4, 6-3 triumph over Ysaline Bonaventure and Kirsten Flipkens.
The Group D winner will be decided Friday when the Czech Republic (1-0) faces the United States (1-0). Poland (0-2) is already eliminated.
Canada (1-0) and Switzerland (1-0) will clash on Friday to determine the Group A winner. Italy lost both of its matches.
Billie Jean King Cup group-stage standings
1. Switzerland, 1-0
2. Canada, 0-0
3. Italy, 0-1
1. Australia, 2-0
2. Slovakia, 1-1
3. Belgium, 0-2
1. Spain, 1-1
2. Kazakhstan, 1-1
3. Great Britain, 1-1
1. United States, 1-0
2. Czech Republic, 0-1
3. Poland, 0-1
–Field Level Media
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