The last edition of the Fed Cup in its current format required five incredible games to designate its champion.
In Perth, everything was ready for a triumph of Australians! Having the advantage of his own ground, on the hard, but also with the world leader in the team, Ashleigh Barty, Australia started as a great favorite in front of the French.
But from day one, things got trickier for the hosts! Mladenovici (40 WTA) beat Tomljanovici (51 WTA), score 6-1, 6-1, and France took the lead: 1-0. However, the reply from the hosts came immediately and was one to measure: Barty (1 WTA) – Garcia (45 WTA), score 6-0, 6-0, in just 58 minutes!
After Saturday's games, Australia – France was 1-1!
Three more fantastic games followed, Sunday morning. Garcia, after the disaster of the first day, was replaced by veteran Parmentier (122 WTA) at singles, Mladenovici continued to play sensationally, and Barty was the unpleasant surprise of the day. Here are the results recorded, Sunday morning, in the two simple games:
* Barty (1 WTA) – Mladenovici (40 WTA)
6-2, 4-6, 6-7
* Tomljanovici (51 WTA) – Parmentier (122 WTA)
With the equal score, 2-2, after the singles matches, the final reached the match with number five and was decided at double! Here, the Frenchmen went on the Mladenovici / Garcia formula, while the hosts sent the Barty / Stosur tandem on the field.
The first set was won by Mladenovici and Garcia, given that the two were initially led by 2-0! From here, however, their comeback began, they were 3-2 and 4-3 in a row, after which they won 6-4.
The second set was simply fabulous! Mladenovici and Garcia started with a 3-0 record. Then they kept their lead, leading 4-1 and 5-2. In the 8th round, the Frenchmen wasted the first two title balls and the pair Barty – Stosur came close to 5-3. But in the next range, things became clear: Mladenovici and Garcia went to 40-30 on their own and took advantage of the third title ball!
France triumphed for the third time in the Fed Cup, after the victories of 1997 and 2003. The Frenchmen also lost three finals in 2004, 2005 and 2016.
On the other hand, Australia remains with the seven Fed Cup victories (1964, 1965, 1968, 1970, 1971, 1973, 1974) and the "curse" of the lost finals, 11 (1963, 1969, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1984, 1993, 2019).
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