LAHAINA, February 12, 2017
Alison Riske celebrated her first ever Fed Cup singles rubber win and CoCo Vandeweghe was up a set and a break when rain suspended play on a soggy Day 1 of the Fed Cup by BNP Paribas first round tie between the United States and Germany in Hawaii.
Riske opened play when she defeated Andrea Petkovic 7-6, 6-2. The World No. 40 from Pittsburgh hit 21 winners and capitalized on five of her nine break point opportunities to seal victory in one hour and 41 minutes. Her feat gave the hosts a 1-0 lead on team Germany.
“I was so nervous the entire time today,” Riske told after the match. “I was trying to fight… every point I was trying to be there. It worked in my favour. Getting the first set under my belt relieved some of the nerves, though not all of them.”
On her first-ever Fed Cup win she added: “I’m going to start crying! It definitely means a lot to me. We want to win so badly for (team captain) Kathy Rinaldi. I’m glad to add to the win line.”
In the second singles rubber on a windy day in Hawaii, Vandeweghe established a strong 6-3, 3-1 lead over Germany’s number two player Julia Görges in a match that featured three rain delays and an injury.
Görges was slipping with her left foot on the baseline and then going down to the ground. She was helped off the court by a team of physios but was able to continue after a rain delay. Another shower, however, ended Saturday’s action.
Outdated Stanza of the German National Anthem Played
During the opening ceremony prior to the on-court competition, a solo artist sang the first stanza of Germany’s national anthem, which was used during the Nazi regime due to its nationalistic tone.
“I thought it was the epitome of ignorance, and I have never felt more disrespected in life, let alone in Fed Cup, and I have played Fed Cup for 13 years now and it is the worst thing that has ever happened to me,” Petkovic, who considered walking off the court during the incident, was not mincing words after her match.
“The USTA extends a sincere apology to the German Fed Cup team & fans for the outdated National Anthem,” the US Tennis Association said in a tweet. “This mistake will not occur again.”
— Doris Henkel (@henner37) 11. Februar 2017
Play will resume with the second rubber at 09:30 local time. The United States, who are competing in the World Group after a two-year absence, are aiming to reach the semi-finals for the first time since 2010, when the team finished runner-up to Italy.