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Billie Jean King Cup 2023: India blank hosts Uzbekistan 3-0 in second tie

First Published: 13th April, 2023 12:16 IST

This win has taken India to the top of Group 1 standings along with Japan, with three ties to play.

Ankita Raina led India from the front as they blanked hosts Uzbekistan 3-0 in their second tie of the Billie Jean King Cup 2023 Asia/Oceania Group I tennis tournament in Tashkent on Wednesday.

This win has taken India to the top of Group 1 standings along with Japan, with three ties to play.

India defeated Thailand 2-1 on Tuesday with strong performances by Ankita in singles and doubles being the highlight.

On Thursday, India will be locking horns with China, followed by matches against South Korea and Japan.
The Indian team started off with Rutuja Bhosale for the opening match of the Uzbekistan tie. She was up against a 16-year-old Sabrina Olimjanova, who she defeated 5-7, 6-2, 6-4 at a hard outdoor court despite going a set down initially.

Ankita, India’s top-ranked women’s player, ranked 221 in the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) rankings, downed world number 991 Sevil Yuldasheva 6-4, 6-2 in the second match. Sevil was Uzbekistan’s highest-ranked player for this tie in absence of Nigina Abduraimova, ranked at number 186.

Both players broke the serves of their respective opponents twice till the eighth game in the first set to be level at 4-4. Ankita got her third break in the ninth game and took a 1-0 lead despite squandering six of the nine breakpoint opportunities during the first set.

The second set was a more dominant and straightforward affair for the Indian as she never looked back after a 4-0 lead and finished the match in one hour and 19 minutes.

The young Indian pair of Sahaja Yamlapalli and Vaidehi Chaudhari helped India gain a clean sweep over their opponents defeating teenagers Ominahon Valihanova and Maftunabonu Kahramonova 6-1, 6-0 in the doubles match.

The top two teams at the end of Group I ties will be promoted to the playoff stage of the Billie Jean King Cup while the teams finishing fifth and sixth will be relegated to Group II. The third and fourthplaced teams will retain their positions in Group I. (ANI)

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