Photo: Reg CaldecottNick Taylor (USA)
USA and Thailand both enjoyed a fine start to the BNP Paribas World Team Cup, with former champions USA winning all three round-robin ties they contested in the women’s, quad and junior events on the first day of competition at the Olympic Park Tennis Centre in Seoul, Korea, Republic.
Meanwhile, Thailand won both their round-robin contests in men’s World Group 2 and the women’s World Group.
MEN'S WORLD GROUP 2
Thailand’s Suthi Khlongrua, Sumrerng Kruamai and Suwitchai Merngprom dropped just four games in their two singles and one doubles rubber against Israel in round-robin Group A.
Canada, winners of the pre-qualification competition for the Americas earlier this year, beat Greece 3-0 in their first round-robin tie in Group B, while Sri Lanka, winners of the qualification competition for Asia, eased to a 3-0 victory over the Slovak Republic in Group C.
The Group D tie between Germany and Nigeria, the team that won the qualification competition for Africa, ended 2-1 after Wasiu Yusuf and Alex Adewale won the dead doubles rubber against Germany’s Seven Hiller and Pedro Kruemmel, having earlier lost both of their singles rubbers.
WOMEN'S WORLD GROUP
The women’s event began with a round-robin tie between South Africa and Thailand, two teams that came through the regional pre-qualification competitions earlier in the year to earn their place in the women’s World Group.
A fascinating contest saw former world No. 6 Sakhorn Khanthasit defeat South Africa’s Celia du Toit 60 60, but world No. 10 Kgothatso Montjane levelled the tie when she defeated Chusri Inthanin 62 61. However, Athens 2004 Paralympic Games silver medallists Khanthasit and Ratana Techamaneewat eased to a 61 61 victory in the deciding doubles rubber to ensure victory for Thailand.
While Thailand won their Group C tie, Chile and France, the two teams that won the women’s qualifying events for the Americas and Europe, went head-to-head in Group A, with Chile’s Francisca Mardones and Maria Antonieta Ortiz putting the tie beyond the reach of France after the two singles rubbers.
Meanwhile, former women’s finalists Korea, Republic and Switzerland met in Group B, with the host nation having plenty to celebrate after a 3-0 victory. Previous champions USA also made a winning start to Group D after defeating Spain in both singles rubbers.
Japan’s Mitsuteru Moroishi and Italy's Marco Innocenti both dropped just one game apiece in their respective singles rubbers to set up a crucial doubles rubber. Moroishi combined with Shota Kawano to snatch the last two games in each of the two sets to prevail 75 75 and give Japan the overall victory.
Also in Group A, USA began their title defence with a comfortable 3-0 victory over the host nation, Korea, Republic, who are making their debut in the quad event this year.
Group B in the quad event saw former champions Great Britain and Israel both secure comfortable 3-0 wins over South Africa and Canada respectively.
There were comfortable 3-0 victories for top seeds Great Britain, second seeds Netherlands and third seeds South Africa in the first round-robin ties in the junior event, which is once again supported by ITF Wheelchair Tennis Programme Partner the Johan Cruyff Foundation.
In Group A, reigning Cruyff Foundation Junior Masters champion Alfie Hewett set Great Britain en route to a 3-0 win over Iraq, who are making just their second appearance in the junior event this year.
Meanwhile, also in Group A South Africa secured a 3-0 victory over Argentina and are due to meet Great Britain in the final set of round-robin ties later in the week.
In Group B former junior World Team Cup champions Netherlands and USA clinched 3-0 wins over Mexico and Russia respectively, both of whom are making their debuts in the junior event. Diede de Groot, Jeroen Staman and Carlos Anker all had few problems in winning the singles and doubles rubbers against Mexico, while Shelby Baron’s 75 63 win over Gennady Kapkaev gave USA the early lead against Russia.
Overview of Matches - Monday, 21 May 2012
Men's World Group Draw
Men's World Group 2 Draw
Women's World Group Draw
Quad World Group Draw
Junior World Group Draw