Great Britain have hope as Heather Watson powers past Nuria Parrizas Diaz
Heather Watson produced one of her best performances of the season to defeat Spain’s Nuria Parrizas Diaz and keep Great Britain’s hopes of progressing at the Billie Jean King Cup Finals alive.
The 30-year-old won the opening seven games of the match at Glasgow’s Emirates Arena and maintained her momentum to clinch a 6-0 6-2 victory over a player ranked 61 places higher.
Britain’s defeat by Kazakhstan on Tuesday coupled with Spain’s 3-0 success against the same opposition on Wednesday meant Anne Keothavong’s side went into the tie knowing they needed to win every rubber to reach the semi-finals.
Watson has had a poor season and it was no surprise that Katie Boulter was preferred to her as number two singles player on Tuesday.
But Boulter produced an error-strewn display in defeat to Yulia Putintseva and Watson quickly set about justifying Keothavong’s decision to sub her in, playing a near flawless first set in front of an improved crowd.
The veteran of the side having made her debut back in 2011, Watson never looked like faltering in the second set and eased to her 31st victory in the competition.
Australia became the first team to book their place in the last four with a 3-0 victory over Belgium.
Belgian number one Elise Mertens, who dashed to Glasgow after winning the doubles title at the WTA Finals in Texas on Monday evening, retired during the third set of her clash against Ajla Tomljanovic with a shoulder injury.
Belgium played their two matches before the Czech Republic, who had two players at the WTA Finals, contested their first tie, which drew criticism from captain Johan Van Herck.
“We were not helped by the situation,” he said. “What happened with Elise, I don’t think it’s very correct. It had a huge impact on what we had to go through here, especially Elise now with an injury.
“So it’s something where I think we, as a small country, have to pay a price for not being the Czech Republic that starts today or the US that can play in the evening.”
Canada will take on Switzerland on Friday for a place in the semi-finals after beating Italy 3-0, with Leylah Fernandez claiming a 6-0 6-0 victory over Martina Trevisan.
ATP top 10 prize-money earners in 2022: Novak Djokovic leads the way as Nick Kyrgios cracks top 10
Your ATP top 10 prize-money earners in 2022.
Rafael Nadal confirms one event that he will skip in 2023 as cool images emerge from exhibition match
Rafael Nadal won’t defend one of his titles in 2023.
Bianca Andreescu finally ‘in tune with herself’ and hopes to use tennis ‘to help inspire others’
Bianca Andreescu feeling the love on and off the court.
Canada worthy Davis Cup winners as lucky losers, wildcards and substitutes all part of tennis history
Oh, Canada! Enjoy your Davis Cup win.
Ashleigh Barty ‘honoured’ as she battles Nick Kyrgios for prestigious Australian tennis award
Who is your Australian tennis player of the year?
Rafael Nadal says Big Three rivalry with Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic key to their longevity
Rafael Nadal says Big Three rivalry has taken them to “extreme mental and tennis levels”.
Judy Murray the latest to be accused of accepting ‘sportswashing role in Saudi Arabia’
Judy Murray urged “to use the opportunity to speak out and show solidarity”.
Fernando Verdasco’s voluntary doping suspension opens a can of worms in tennis
The use of Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) in tennis questioned.
Carlos Alcaraz, Holger Rune and Jack Draper in the running for two ATP Awards
Your nominees for the 2022 ATP Awards.
Mom-to-be Angelique Kerber eyes comeback and hopes to be an inspiration for new moms and women
Angelique Kerber reveals her comeback plan.