Poland into Hopman Cup final to face US

Poland will face the United States in Saturday`s mixed teams Hopman Cup final.

AFP| Updated: Jan 09, 2015, 22:57 PM IST
Poland into Hopman Cup final to face US

Perth: Poland will face the United States in Saturday`s mixed teams Hopman Cup final.

The Polish team of Agnieszka Radwanska and Jerzy Janowicz qualified for the title decider with a 2-1 win over the French pairing of Alize Cornet and Benoit Paire on Friday.

They will face the American duo of Serena Williams and John Isner in the final.

Cornet kept France`s hopes of reaching the final alive with a brave three-set win over Radwanska in a performance inspired by her desire to honour her 12 countrymen killed in the Charlie Hebdo magazine attack on Wednesday.

However, Janowicz then ensured the Poles would play in the final for the second successive year, his win over Benoit Paire in the men`s singles meaning Poland could not be dislodged from the top of Group B.

Janowicz eventually beat the misfiring Paire in straight sets, 6-4, 7-6 (8/6), after the Frenchman staved off four match points.

Radwanska teamed with Grzegorz Panfil to reach last year`s final in the country`s Hopman Cup debut, but the Poles were beaten by France`s Cornet and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

The Poles won the shortened doubles, with only a single set played, 6-4.

Radwanska said she was looking forward to the chance to atone for last year`s loss in the final.

"Hopefully this year we can win one more match," she said.

"But the USA are good players so it is going to be a tough one."

Earlier, fifth-ranked Radwanska and 18th-ranked Cornet produced the match of the tournament in an epic singles encounter that the Frenchwoman eventually won 6-4, 2-6, 7-5.

Cornet, beaten in the singles by Radwanska in last year`s final, described it as one of the best wins of her career.

With "Je Suis Charlie" written on her tennis bag, the 24-year-old said she was horrified by the Charlie Hebdo killings and was determined to honour the victims on the court.

"Each time I was going to the chair I was seeing the message and it was coming to my mind," she said.

"I was thinking `you are here, you have the chance to do what you like and play in front of this amazing crowd, so just have fun and give everything and try to win for them`.

"It is a good thing, because I can bring even more this message when I win the match.

"For me it is very important because we have to be conscious that what happened is really, really bad and stay strong."

In the evening session, Great Britain beat Australia 3-0 in a tie that had no impact on the final.

Andy Murray wrapped up an impressive week of singles ahead of the Australian Open with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Marinko Matosevic, while Heather Watson had her first singles win of the tournament against world number 29 Casey Dellacqua, 6-3, 6-4.