The second day of the 2017 Hopman Cup was more eagerly awaited than the first. The global tennis fans wanted to see the comeback of Swiss Maestro Roger Federer, when his team played against Great Britain. True to his famous command on the game, Federer began his match against Britain’s Dan Evans with an ace. That marked his superiority throughout the 63-minute encounter as Evans couldn’t stand up to the 17-time Grand Slam winner and lost in straight sets. Federer’s compatriot Belinda Bencic made it 2-0 for Switzerland to leave the ensuing mixed doubles an inconsequential event. Experience had also come to the fore in France’s tie against Germany earlier on the second day, when Richard Gasquet prevailed over the fast upcoming Alexander Zverev as France beat Germany 2-1. On the opening day, the first tie had pitted USA against the Czech Republic that ended with an easy 3-0 win for USA. Later on the first day, defending champions Australia lost their first tie to Spain despite Nick Kyrgios providing a 1-0 lead. But Daria Gavrilova couldn’t produce the expected form and lost to Lara Arruabarrena. Later Spain stormed back to defeat Australia in mixed doubles for a 2-1 result in the rubber.
The first day of 2017 Hopman Cup opened with a tie between USA and the Czech Republic. The first match of the tournament featured USA’s Coco Vandeweghe playing against Lucie Hradecka. The American woman didn’t have to work too hard against Hradecka in her 6-4, 6-2 victory. Later, world no.23 Jack Sock made it an assailable 2-0 by defeating the Czech Adam Pavlasek 7-5, 3-6, 6-3. With victory already assured, the US pair of Vandeweghe/Sock scored a 2-4, 4-2, 4-1 win over Hradecka/Pavlasek in the first-ever Fast-Four Format for mixed doubles.
In the second session on opening day, defending champions Australia made an inauspicious start in their 1-2 loss against Spain. In men’s singles played first, an impressive Nick Kyrgios looked vastly superior to Spain’s Feliciano Lopez in his 6-3 6-4 win. Kyrgios sent down 14 booming aces in the 23-minute first set and came out equally well in the second set to put Australia 1-0 ahead. But in women’s singles, Daria Gavrilova couldn’t match Kyrgios’ form and lost to world No.66 Lara Arruabarrena 5-7, 1-6. The Australian had a breakout 2016 season, when she rose to no.25 in the world. Against Arruabarrena, however, Gavrilova played an error-prone game that resulted in Spain leveling the tie 1-1. In the mixed doubles, the Spanish pair of Arruabarrena/Lopez scored an easy 4-0, 4-2 win over Gavrilova /Kyrgios to take the tie 2-1.
The first tie on the second day was played between France and Germany. The first match was the women’s singles between Frenchwoman Kristina Mladenovic and Germany’s Andrea Petkovic. France trailed 0-1, when Mladenovic lost 2-6, 1-6. But in men’s singles that followed next, Richard Gasquet proved that experience cannot be so easily disregarded. The upcoming German teenager Alexander Zverev found Gasquet too hard to counter despite putting up solid resistance in the first set. But it was Gasquest, who prevailed at 7-5, 6-3 and he brought France level with Germany before the mixed doubles. Gasquet/Mladenovic looked highly impressive against Zverev/Petkovic as they won the match 4-2, 4-1 and France stole the honor with the 2-1 win over Germany.
However, it was the second session on the second day that everyone awaited. The great Roger Federer was making his comeback after six months and he played the first singles for Switzerland against Great Britain’s Dan Evans. The 35-year-old Swiss began the proceeding with a service ace to a standing ovation by the expectant spectators. From then on, the celebrated Swiss dictated terms to beat the Brit 6-3, 6-4 in a mere 63 minutes. There was hardly a step that Federer put wrong against the hapless Evans, who didn’t have any answers to the vastly experienced Federer. Later, Federer’s compatriot, Belinda Bencic fought hard against Britain’s Heather Watson. After winning the first set and leading 3-1 in the second, Bencic allowed Watson to stage a comeback by forcing the decider but the Swiss woman held herself well to notch up a 7-5, 3-6, 6-2 victory that gave Switzerland the tie. In the inconsequential mixed doubles later, Federer and Bencic combined well to defeat Watson/Evans 4-0, 4-1.
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