Poland will face Italy in the United Cup Brisbane City finals after their respective teams clinched their places on Tuesday.
Italy snatched their place early on the day as Matteo Berrettini downed Casper Ruud 6-4, 6-4 to give his team a 3-0 lead in the tie.
The Italian No 2 said that the tournament has been eye-opening for the team, who are thrilled with the progress made in the game in Italy.
“The goal is to have the longest run possible. It’s super nice to play with my teammates. We know each other since a really young age. It’s crazy and now we’re representing Italy. It’s such an honour for us,” Berrettini said.
“The other day at dinner we were talking about when we were 12 playing against each other. It’s super nice and I’m really happy. It’s the first time obviously playing with the girls and I think it’s special, different, maybe a little bit more stressful. But we’re enjoying [it] a lot.”
Berrettini felt that he had to lean on his power against someone like Ruud, who is tough to put away.
“Casper, he’s a super-solid player, he improved so much in the past year. So I knew that I had to serve my best,” Berrettini said. “We know each other pretty well, so we’re kind of always studying what we’re doing and I knew that I had to serve like that. One thing is knowing and one thing is doing it, but I’m really glad it worked out pretty well and happy.”
Italy went on to claim a 5-0 tie win as Lucia Bronzetti won her singles match and the team of Camilla Rosatello and Lorenzo Musetti coming out on top in the mixed doubles.
Poland join Italy in the Brisbane City final after Hubert Hurkacz and Magda Linette claimed crucial singles victories to wrap up the tie before the mixed doubles.
Hurkacz had to be at his best to put down Switzerland team captain Stan Wawrinka.
“Never had a chance before to play against Stan, so I was really looking forward for that match. He’s such a legend of the sport. I was watching him win the Grand Slams and now I can share the court with him, so that was a huge pleasure for me,” Hurkacz said.
“Definitely a very big match. Obviously very happy to get a point for Team Poland, so I was really excited about it. It was a big point for us and we’ll keep fighting.
“Never had a chance before to play against Stan, so I was really looking forward for that match. He’s such a legend of the sport. I was watching him win the Grand Slams and now I can share the court with him, so that was a huge pleasure for me.
“Definitely a very big match. Obviously very happy to get a point for Team Poland, so I was really excited about it. It was a big point for us and we’ll keep fighting.”
Linette had lost her only previous meeting with big-serving Jil Teichmann and needed to overcome the frustration of giving up a handsome opening set lead.
“I played against Jil and she smoked me the last time so I knew I had to bring my best tennis,” Linette said. “I was so frustrated in the first set when I had a good lead and I didn’t do a very good job, I wasn’t focused enough. I’m really happy that I was able to reset after the first set and come back strong.”
Poland will meet Italy in the Brisban City Finals on Wednesday.
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