16 Apr 2018

Spain, Great Britain win European Qualification

News Article

Photo: Sandra Leite Momentum PhotographySpain men

Spain won the men’s event at the BNP Paribas World Team Cup European Qualification for the second time since 2014 on Sunday in Vilamoura, Portugal, as Great Britain earned a dramatic late-night victory in the doubles rubber of the women’s decider after a rain-hit final day of play.

Spain and Great Britain will now contest the men’s and women’s events at the 2018 BNP Paribas World Team Cup finalist in Apeldoorn, Netherlands, from 28 May – 3 June.

Top seed Spain finished the men’s event without dropping a set in four ties, defeating third seed Israel 2-0 in Sunday’s final.

Due to the delayed start to the day’s competition both singles rubbers were played simultaneously on adjacent courts and world No. 19 Martin de la Puente beat Israel’s Guy Sasson 60 63 in his singles match.

Shortly afterwards world No. 14 Daniel Caverzaschi sealed Spain’s victory with another dominant performance that resulted in a 61 61 win over Adam Berdichevsky.  Caverzaschi finished the week having dropped just six games in his singles rubbers in Spain’s four ties.

“I’m very happy, it’s been a good week. We did a good job, I think. We were focussed from the beginning, in theory we were favourites, we were supposed to win every match and we did it,” said Caverzaschi. “We’re very pleased to go back to the World Team Cup in May and we’re looking forward to it. We’re a good team for the future, so we’ll continue to work hard and hopefully we’re going to achieve good things in the future.

“Last year’s World Team Cup was a complete drama for us. We had a triple tie between Belgium and Argentina (in the round-robin pool) and by three games we were third and finally descended (to the play-off for 11th place).

“I think we can do good things in May if we can continue like this and hopefully things can go better,” said de la Puente. “The match in the final (today) was pretty special. I was a little bit nervous at the beginning. I’m happy with the work we’ve done. We are used to playing (singles matches) at the same time, so it wasn’t that difficult.”

Spain will go on to contest the men’s eventin the BNP Paribas World Team Cup finals for the 27th time.

Due to the rain-delayed start to the day all of the other schedule men’s play-offs were cancelled.

Great Britain beat Russia in late-night doubles decider

With top seed Great Britain and second seed Russia coming into their crucial fourth and last round-robin tie with three 3-0 wins apiece against Austria, Belgium and Sweden, both teams were to drop their first rubbers of the week as Lucy Shuker and Viktoriia Lvova and Louise Hunt and Ludmila Bubnova faced each other on adjacent courts.

World No. 8 Shuker beat Russian No. 1 Lvova 63 61, while Bubnova defeated Louise Hunt 75 63 to ensure a tense conclusion to the women’s final.

Further rain meant that the deciding doubles finished under floodlights shortly after midnight, with Hunt and Shuker holding off Lvova and Polina Shakirova 75 61.

It’s been a long day, obviously the weather’s not been great, but we’re happy that we managed to come through. I had a good singles earlier and I think Louise and I doubles up really well,” said Shuker

“There were a lot of emotions (today) and I agree with Lucy, I think we played a fantastic match together and I’m just super happy that we got the result. At the end of the day we got what we wanted. We came here to win and that’s what we’ve done,” said Hunt, who started the week by winning her first two singles rubbers 60 60.

“I think we’re all very happy to be through and today, especially, has been a tough day. I was just trying to do my best to help these guys perform and I think they did that,” added Hunt and Shuker’s Great Britain teammate Lauren Jones.

Great Britain will now contest the women’s event at the BNP Paribas World Team Cup finals for the 26th time in Apeldoorn.