Billie Jean King Cup: On Sunday, Switzerland’s Belinda Bencic defeated Australia’s Ajla Tomljanovic to win the Billie Jean King Cup for the first time.
Bencic defeated Tomljanovic in straight sets in the second finals match at Glasgow’s Emirates Arena.
Bencic won with scores of 6-2, and 6-1, giving Switzerland a 2-0 advantage over Australia.
Jil Teichmann’s victory over Storm Sanders had given Switzerland the lead.
In the heyday of Martina Hingis in 1998 and last year, when they came in second place to the now-banned Russian Tennis Federation, Switzerland had previously advanced to the final on both occasions.
Despite a challenging draw, they haven’t lost a live rubber in Glasgow, and Australia was helpless to avert yet another final loss.
Australia, a seven-time winner, had been looking for their first victory since 1974.
In front of a sizable and enthusiastic crowd that included King, who arrived on the court prior to the match and high-fived all the players, this was a rematch of Australia’s semi-final victory of only eight games from the previous year. At least this time, Australia made it more competitive.
Despite playing well above her singles ranking of 237 in a thrilling match, Sanders was defeated by Teichmann in a 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 contest that lasted two hours and 18 minutes.
Sanders defeated Heather Watson to help Australia defeat Great Britain in the semi-finals on Saturday. She then teamed up with Sam Stosur to win the decisive doubles match by the slimmest of margins over Alicia Barnett and Olivia Nicholls.
🇨🇭 🏆 SWITZERLAND ARE WORLD CHAMPIONS 🏆 🇨🇭#BJKCupFinals
— Billie Jean King Cup (@BJKCup) November 13, 2022
Although she continued to receive treatment for a right leg injury, she refused to let her opponent draw away, coming back from a set and a break down until running out of gas in the final. She is ranked more than 200 places below fellow left-hander Teichmann.
On the court afterwards, Teichmann remarked, “It was a great battle.” “I was anticipating a big fight because Storm had been playing so well all week. I’m so glad I got the point because here I was getting into the fight.”
The 12th-ranked Bencic, who won gold in the singles and silver in the doubles at the Tokyo Olympics last summer, has once more displayed her best play while wearing the red and white of her native nation.
The 25-year-old had an undefated record coming into her match against Tomljanovic, who had fallen to Harriet Dart on Saturday, and she easily defeated her in that 6-2 6-1 victory.
Switzerland is the first new champion since Italy in 2006 and the 12th nation to win the competition formerly known as Fed Cup.