Kenin to open Fed Cup final for U.S. against Strycova

Kristopher Nichols
November 13, 2018

The United States Fed Cup Team scored at least one win in Prague by beating the Czech Republic 5-3.in hockey.

Alison Riske will be the second singles player on court tomorrow for the U.S. in the Fed Cup final as her country looks to win back-to-back competitions for the first time since the turn of the millennium.

Despite that late break that kept her in the match, Riske was unable to play on the same level in the tie break, losing three points on serve against the rival who stayed focused behind her initial shot to clinch the breaker 7-2 and send the Czech Republic 2-0 up before the second day on Sunday.

The Czech Republic have won 10 straight ties at home and, as the dominant force in the competition over the past decade, are looking for a sixth title in eight years.

The inexperienced United States of America team are without Serena and Venus Williams as well as Sloane Stephens and Madison Keys, while the hosts have Karolina Pliskova injured.

Siniakova was the MVP of the weekend, stepping up after Czech No. 1 Petra Kvitova couldn't play due to an illness.

"I believe in all my players". But it could be the singles rubbers that determine the result, and fortunately Katerina Siniakova and Barbora Strycova are also ranked 31 and 33 respectively in singles.

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Siniakova looked ready to cruise through after getting a break point in Kenin's first service game.

In doubles, the last match of the final, Riske and Danielle Collins are scheduled to meet No. 1-ranked pair Barbora Krejcikova and Siniakova. Only Alison Riske has participated before, in three ties. She has won four Fed Cups.

The USA can take comfort in their record against their opponents, having not lost to the Czechs in eight meetings dating back to 1985, while they are on a seven-match winning streak after beating Belarus in the final a year ago.

But the 32-year-old Strycova called on all her experience, bringing the home crowd back into the match by racing ahead 3-0 in the second set and securing the set four games later with a big serve that Kenin returned high and long.

· The USA is bidding to win eight consecutive Fed Cup ties for the first time since 1989-91.

"I think I definitely do like the court a lot and any time that I'm indoors".

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