Russia knocks out the United States in doubles

Russia won the decisive duel in doubles on Friday to eliminate the United States 2-1 and advance to the final of the Billie Jean King Cup.

Veronika Kudermetova and Liudmila Samsonova defeated the American duo of Shelby Rogers and Coco Vandeweghe 6-3, 6-3 after the teams split the two games into semi-final singles.

Russia reaches its first final since 2015 in the competition that was previously known as the Federation Cup.

“We feel great,” said Kudermetova.

The Russians are seeking their fifth title and will meet Switzerland in Saturday’s final at the O2 Arena in Prague. The Swiss swept the Australians 2-0 after winning their two singles matches in consecutive sets.

The United States came out as the most successful country in the competition, with 18 trophies, but Russia took a 1-0 lead when Samsonova rallied to beat Sloane Stephens 1-6, 6-4, 6-3.

Samsonova broke Stephens’ serve in the fifth game of the final set and again in the ninth game, clinching her second match point when a Stephens backhand ended too wide.

Samsonova, who also beat Stephens at Wimbledon this year, called herself “a little nervous” on her singles debut for Russia.

“But I feel very happy for this opportunity, I am very happy with the way it ended,” he added.


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