Former French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko overcame a fiercely decided Ankita Raina 6-2, 5-7, 7-5 to place host Latvia 1-0 forward within the Billie Jean King Cup World Group playoff tie on the indoor area in Jurmala on Friday.
With the Indian main 5-4 within the third set, the 23-year-old Ostapenko dealt with the climactic part like a champion. Nevertheless, the 28-year-old Ankita couldn’t shut it out, opening the door for the Latvian.
Maybe, a greater begin might have helped Ankita. Not used to going through an opponent of such high quality appeared to be taking part in on the Indian’s thoughts as she determined to go on an all-out assault and stored making errors. Although Ostapenko, too, struggled along with her serve and strokes, Ankita was unable to capitalise on the alternatives that got here her means.
Exact and purposeful
After shrugging off the joy of the primary set, Ankita was much more exact and purposeful within the second set. She jumped to a 2-0 lead and stretched it to 5-2.
Nevertheless, Ostapenko, who discovered her serving rhythm, fought again. Ankita stored her cool, ran laborious in the course of the rallies and positioned the ball nicely to pressure errors from the Latvian.
At 5-6, Ostapenko’s serve let her down once more, taking the competition to the decider. After being handled for a hip pressure, she received off to a clean begin within the third set.
Whereas the Latvian No. 2 grew to become extra assured and stable, Ankita’s accuracy failed her at a vital juncture although she continued to place within the laborious yards.
Ankita performed nicely above her rating of 174, pushing a Grand Slam champion to the restrict.
Within the second singles, Anastasija Sevastova breezed previous Karman Kaur Thandi 6-4, 6-0. After giving it her all within the first set, the latter ran out of steam as Sevastova made her scamper across the court docket.
The reverse singles and doubles might be held on Saturday, and India will hope to give you one thing particular.
The outcomes: Latvia leads India 2-0 (Jelena Ostapenko bt Ankita Raina 6-2, 5-7, 7-5; Anastasija Sevastova bt Karman Kaur Thandi 6-4, 6-0).