Cezch Republic's perfect start to Hopman Cup

The Czech Republic and Poland dominate in early stages of the Hopman Cup as Italy and Australia are found wanting.

    Cezch Republic's perfect start to Hopman Cup
    Radek Stepanek has secured the tie for the Czechs with an easy win over Spaniard Daniel Munoz-De La Nava.[AFP]

    The Czech Republic has completed a clean sweep of Spain at the mixed-team Hopman Cup in Perth.

    Petra Kvitova was far too good for Medina Garrigues on Sunday, who won the tournament with Fernando Verdasco earlier this year but battled knee soreness against the 2011 Wimbledon champion in their singles clash.

    From the outset, Kvitova simply had too much power for the Spaniard, ranked 100th, and she dropped just one game in a 6-1, taking less than an hour.

    Kvitova's boyfriend, Radek Stepanek, then secured the tie for the Czechs with an easy win over little-known Spaniard Daniel Munoz-De La Nava.

    Kvitova, 23, was pleased with her form, saying she had worked hard on improving her fitness heading into the new year.

    "My off-season preparation was very hard," she said.

    "I need to be healthy for sure because unfortunately I have always struggled with my body so I hope it's going to be better.

    "I can improve everything (fitness-wise)."

    Knee trouble

    Medina Garrigues highlighted her ongoing knee soreness after the long flight to Australia, but was confident she would be fit to fulfil her commitments at the tournament.

    Stepanek, 35, had no problems with Munoz-De La Nava, winning 6-2, 6-2 in 78 minutes.

    Ranked 194th in the world compared to Stepanek's 44, Munoz-De La Nava was a late call-up for the Hopman Cup, when countryman Tommy Robredo pulled out just 24 hours before the event with an arm injury.

    The Czechs completed a 3-0 win in the tie when they cruised through the mixed doubles, winning 6-3, 6-4.

    Poland have an insurmountable 2-0 lead over Canada as victories for Agnieszka Radwanska and Grzegorz Panfil secure the tie for Poland.

    On Saturday Canada triumphed 2-1 over Australia with Milos Raonic overcoming Bernard Tomic 7-6 (8/6), 6-1 and Eugenie Bouchard coming from behind to defeat Samantha Stosur 4-6, 6-2, 6-3.

    Australia were able to salvage some pride with a Stosur and Tomic claiming an emphatic 6-2, 6-4 in the mixed doubles against Bouchard and Raonic.

    Poland beat Italy comfortably 3-0 with Agnieszka Radwanska dispatching Flavia Penetta 6-2, 6-2 and Andreas Seppi retiring hurt against Grzegorz Panfil whilst down 6-4, 2-2.

    The injury to Seppi also meant a 6-0, 6-0 walkover for the Polish pair of Radwanska and Panfil in the mixed doubles.

    SOURCE: AFP


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