(February 10, 2013) Great Britain’s Fed Team have defeated Bulgaria 2-0 in their promotional play-off of the Fed Cup Euro/Africa Zone Group I competition. This puts Great Britain into the World Group II play-off on April 20-21. The venue and opponent for the team will be announced by the International Tennis Federation (ITF) at 1100 GMT on Wednesday, February 13.
In Sunday’s first singles rubber, Laura Robson beat Dia Evtimova 6-0 6-4 in exactly an hour. In contrast to Robson’s previous performance against Hungary the previous day where she dropped the opening set 6-0, she came out firing this time and barely dropped a point as she bageled her opponent in 21 minutes. The British No. 2 dropped her serve once in the match as she fell behind 1-2, but broke back immediately and broke again in the final game for victory to put Team GB 1-0 in front. Following the match, Robson said: “I was really happy to get the win and put the team 1-0 up. I definitely played better than yesterday and today conditions were very tough in the wind. Overall I was pleased with my play all week putting the team ahead the three times I played singles.”
In the second singles, British No. 1 Heather Watson put in a strong comeback to defeat the opposition’s top singles player, former Wimbledon semifinalist, Tsvetana Pironkova 1-6, 6-4, 6-2 in 90 minutes. After holding to open the match, Watson dropped the next seven games in a row before gaining the second set’s only break for 4-3 and was never threatened again, winning five games in a row herself to lead 4-0 in the decider and breaking again for 5-2. Reflecting on the match, the Watson commented: “I was making too many easy mistakes during the first set and I knew in the second I had to make life tougher for her. Once I got that break in the seventh game I was rolling, and in the third I played really well. It means a lot for the whole team to come here and get the job done. We all had a fantastic time on and off the court during the whole week and it was the best Fed Cup experience yet for me.”
Speaking after the tie, Captain Judy Murray said, “Great performances from Laura and Heather today gave us a winning 2-0 lead over Bulgaria and promotion from Euro/Africa Zone I. This win puts us into a play-off in April for a place in World Group II and we are all very much hoping for a home tie. We’ve had a great week with a terrific team spirit. The girls have all worked hard on court and had a lot of fun off court. Fed Cup is the only chance for the girls to play as a team for their country so it’s important that they experience is enjoyable both competitively and socially. We are all looking forward to the draw next Wednesday and to see what comes out of that.