Serbia cuts lead in Fed Cup final

Associated Press  |  Last updated November 03, 2012
Former No. 1 Ana Ivanovic upset Petra Kvitova 6-3, 7-5 in the first reverse singles on Sunday to keep Serbia's hopes alive in the Fed Cup final against defending champion Czech Republic. The Czechs took a 2-0 lead after the opening singles on Saturday but Ivanovic's victory halved that advantage. The 12th-ranked Ivanovic jumped to a 4-1 lead in the second set and converted her third match point with a forehand winner. ''It was amazing feeling,'' said Ivanovic who improved to 4-1 against Kvitova and to 13-6 in Fed Cup singles. ''It was a tough point and I was really going for it. I knew that today I was going to play better because I had experience from yesterday.'' Kvitova lost for the first time after recording 11 consecutive Fed Cup singles wins and led the Czechs to victory over Russia in the final last year. Another former top-ranked player, Jelena Jankovic of Serbia, faces Lucie Safarova in the second reverse singles before the final doubles. The Czechs are still one win away from retaining the Fed Cup while first-time finalist Serbia has to win both remaining matches for its first title. Kvitova, who recovered just in time from the bronchitis that forced her to withdraw from last week's WTA Championships, struggled with her serve and was broken in the fifth game of the opening set. Ivanovic dominated with her strong returning and broke her again in the ninth game, converting her seventh set point with a drop shot at the net. Kvitova came back in the second set with her only break of serve in the ninth game but was unable to hold her serve in the final game. She hit 24 winners compared with 29 by Ivanovic. Safarova gave the Czechs a flying start on the indoor hard-court at the O2 Arena by beating Ivanovic 6-4, 6-3, and Kvitova doubled the lead with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Jankovic. ''They had a great day yesterday,'' Ivanovic said. ''It could be the same for us today.''
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