Ega Swatic broke down in tears in the Federation Cup on Friday after a Shocking loss for Jessica Pegula A few days after the Australian Open. The world No. 1 suffered a stunning 6-2, 6-2 loss to the world No. 3 before The United States completed its victory over Poland on Saturday.
Pegula reversed a four-game losing streak against Swatik with a huge win over the reigning French and US Open champions. Frances Tiafoe then extended the Americans’ lead with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over world No. 245 Casper Zuk.
‘Sad to hear’: Carlos Alcaraz makes a surprise announcement for the Aus Open
Huge news: Ash Partey announces pregnancy after retiring from tennis
But the big talking point was Swiatek’s loss, as the Polish star was heavily favored to win the Australian Open. Pegula Switek broke five times and held serve only once as she stormed into her first win against the Grand Slam champion since 2019.
“I’ve played it in a lot of different places, but I definitely feel like this was the quickest of circumstances,” Pegula said. “Poland also had a difficult transition yesterday (flying in from Brisbane) and we were lucky enough to be playing here, maybe getting a little advantage using the pitches.
“So I wanted to take that and use it as much as I could and I’ve done a really good job of playing aggressively, serving intelligently and coming back really well.”
Swiatek could be seen in tears after the match, a backlash that divided tennis fans. Some express grief over the world No. 1, while others accuse her of poor sportsmanship.
The 21-year-old later explained: “I just knew I felt kind of helpless today, because physically and mentally I wasn’t able to show up evenly and solve problems. So it’s always difficult when you lose, especially when you’re playing for the team and for your country.
“So I was just sad. But, you know, this isn’t the first time I’ve cried after losing a game. Nothing special.”
The United States advances to the United Cup Final
Pegula (5-0) and Tiafoe (4-0) are undefeated in nine singles and doubles matches so far at this tournament, before Taylor Fritz secured his place in Sunday’s final. On Saturday, Fritz outlasted Hubert Hurkacz in a two-set tiebreaker to give the United States a 3-0 lead.
Fritz also maintained his unbeaten record in the new mixed team event by winning 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-5). He said: “It was great to get the win today to qualify. I had no doubt that if I had lost the rest of the team would have won.
“I’ve played with Team USA a lot but I think it’s a huge advantage this time to have the girls on our team because it makes the whole team a lot stronger. So I’m really excited to get into the finals and I think we’ve been favorites all week.”
Let’s just keep going. Let’s win this thing,” Tiafoe said after his Friday night win. “My confidence has been really high for a while. I’ve been playing some of the best tennis of my life now and I’m just having fun out there on the court.”
“I’m just competitive, comfortable in myself, comfortable in my game, and I’m happy with where I am. But I can get better.”
Italy went 2-0 ahead of Greece in the other semi-final match on Friday night. World number 27 Martina Trevisan stunned Maria Sakkari 6-3 6-7 (7-5) 7-5, before Lorenzo Musetti dominated Stefanos Sakellaridis 6-1 6-1.
Matteo Berrettini can book a place in the final for Italy when he takes on Stefanos Tsitsipas on Saturday. Lucia Bronzete is set to face Despina Papamichael in the other women’s singles before the mixed doubles.
click here To sign up for our newsletter to get the latest breaking news from Australia and around the world.