Fed Cup World Group II: Ukraine 1, Australia 1 after first day

by: AP | February 09, 2018

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Marta Kostyuk leveled the Ukraine's Fed Cup tie against Australia. (AP)

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Fifteen-year-old Marta Kostyuk evened Ukraine's Fed Cup World Group II match with Australia at 1-1, beating Daria Gavrilova 7-6 (3), 6-3 on Saturday.

Kostyuk, who made it to the third round at the Australian Open as a qualifier, dominated the first-set tiebreaker after several exchanges of service breaks. She clinched the match when Gavrilova hit a return long.

Earlier on a temporary grass court at the Canberra Tennis Centre, Ashleigh Barty gave Australia a 1-0 lead after beating No.883-ranked Lyudmyla Kichenok 4-6, 6-1, 6-4.

Ukraine is playing without world No. 3 Elina Svitolina, who beat Kostyuk in the third round at Melbourne Park in January.

The reverse singles will be played on Sunday, with Barty facing Kostyuk and Gavrilova against Kichenok, although late changes could be made.

Gavrilova said she would be better equipped for the reverse singles having played a match on the grass court.

"I was pretty nervous and I definitely didn't play my best," Gavrilova said.

In doubles, Barty and Casey Dellacqua were scheduled to play the Ukrainian pair of Nadiia Kichenok and Dasha Lopatetskaya.

The winning country will return to the top-tier World Group.

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