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USA Wins It's Fifth Hopman Cup!! Yay!!

Friday, January 4, 2008

Serbia put up a brave fight, but Serena Williams and Mardy Fish have powered the United States to its fifth Hyundai Hopman Cup victory to continue its dominance in the 20-year-old ITF mixed teams championship at Perth’s Burswood Dome.

The USA didn’t win until the ninth staging of the tournament, but has now won five times, including four in the past six years. Williams previously was victorious in 2003 with James Blake, while it was Fish’s first win in his second appearance.

Credit must be given to the top seeds Serbia, who continued to fight despite Jankovic being restricted due to a strained muscle at the top of her right hamstring.

Djokovic had an outstanding week in Perth, needing to make up for Jankovic being unable to finish three of her singles matches. Djokovic ended up undefeated in his singles, with the final the only loss in the mixed doubles for the pair of world No. 3s.

The USA was handed the advantage when Jankovic was unable to play the women’s singles, but Djokovic ensured the mixed doubles would decide the winner by beating Fish in a gruelling three-set battle.

After a fast start, Serbia couldn’t match it with two accomplished doubles players, with the Americans wrapping up the win 7-6 (5), 6-2.

Already exhausted from his mammoth performance the previous two days, Djokovic had to endure a two and a half hour marathon with Fish to send the final into a deciding mixed doubles ru
bber. Djokovic won 6-2, 6-7 (4), 7-6 (4).

Djokovic had succeeded in the past two ties winning his singles and being dominant in the
doubles to see Serbia into the final after Jankovic withdrew through injury in her match on each occasion.

He again started tremendously in the men’s singles that unusually kicked off final proceedings against Fish.

The American had been dominant on serve all week, but Djokovic broke his opening service again, and once more in the opening set to claim it 6-2.

Fish was able to break Djokovic’s serve twice in the second set, but on both occasions the Serb broke straight back to keep things even.

However, Djokovic had a chance to break Fish again with the score at 5-4 and win the match,
but couldn’t and the set went to a tie-break.

Fish was right on top and had no trouble sending the match into a third set by winning the tie-break seven points to four.

Djokovic was showing understandable signs of fatigue during the second and third sets, but he managed to hang in against a much fresher Fish and force the third to a deciding tie-break.

Djokovic managed to power through despite appearing exhausted, winning seven points to four to keep his country alive and a chance to win its first Hyundai Hopman Cup.

The Serbians made a brilliant start to the mixed doubles and looked capable of upsetting Williams and Fish by racing to a 4-1 lead. The USA then won the next three games to level the set, though, and it went to a tie-break.

Williams and Fish claimed it seven points to five to win the set in 52 minutes and hold a crucial advantage over Serbia with Jankovic on one leg.

The Americans quickly wrapped up the second set 6-2 and Williams and Fish were ecstatic to be crowned Hyundai Hopman Cup XX champions.
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