Hopman Cup: Japan beat USA 2-1 to stay in contention

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Hopman Cup: Japan beat USA 2-1 to stay in contention

The 5th tie of 2018 Hopman Cup was supposed to produce an interesting tie between the USA and Japan but in the end we didn't have a chance to see a regular match. Japan scored a 2-1 triumph but they had to play without Naomi Osaka, who had to withdraw before her singles match against CoCo Vandeweghe due to illness. 19-year-old Australian Maddison Inglis stepped in and she played really well against the American, losing 7-5 6-2.

In the second match of the day, Yuichi Sugita leveled the overall score when Jack Sock retired after the second game of the second set, and the mixed doubles match had to contain some unexpected faces. Inglis and Sugita defeated Vandeweghe and Pat Cash by 0-4 4-3 4-0 to deliver the victory for Japan, their first at this year's tournament after losing to Switzerland in the first match.

In the second tie of the day, Switzerland will take upon Russia. CoCo Vandeweghe scored her second singles win at this year's Hopman Cup against Maddison Inglis, currently ranked 772nd on the WTA list. 19-year-old Perth native made world number 10 run for her money, creating the same number of break points as the American and pushing her to the limits in the opening set.

CoCo fired 9 aces and her first serve worked better than the Aussie's, which gave her win in the end. Also, she saved 6 out of 8 break points and stole rival's serve 5 times, another crucial factor in her victory. Inglis saved 3 break points to stay on the level terms with Vandeweghe but she gave her serve away in game 9, leaving Vandeweghe to serve for the set in the following game.

Instead of that, Maddison broke back in game 10 after a huge forehand error from the American, leveling the score at 5-5 and extending the set. CoCo stayed focused and she broke again in game 11, clinching the opener with a hold at love in the next game for a 7-5.

Vandeweghe broke at the start of the second set as well with a drive volley winner, and she saved 2 break points in the second game to cement her break. The American grabbed another break in game 5 after a forehand error from Inglis and the youngster pulled one break back immediately, reducing her deficit to 4-2.

Vandeweghe got her third break of the set in game 7 and she wrapped up a win with a forehand winner to send her country in front before men's singles. Yuichi Sugita and Jack Sock played in Cincinnati last summer and the Japanese won that match by 7-5 6-4, and the winner was the same in today's encounter as well. The first set was tight but the deciding moment came when Jack Sock took a fall, and he was forced to retire after the second game of the second set.

Jack broke in game 3 and he saved 2 break points in the 4th game to open up a 3-1 lead. Sugita restored his game and he won 14 out of the 15 points in the middle of the set to move 5-4 ahead, and he missed a set point in game 10 on Sock's serve.

Japanese won the tie break by 7-1 and Jack decided he has had enough after 2 games of the second set, not wanting to risk bigger injury before the official tournaments he is scheduled to play. Japan vs USA 2-1


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