GLASGOW, Scotland (AP)Australia reached the final of the biggest team event in women’s tennis for the 19th time after winning the decisive doubles on a match tiebreaker to beat host nation Britain 2-1 in a thriller at the Billie Jean King Cup on Saturday.
Facing the seven-time winners in Sunday’s title match will be Switzerland, which took an unassailable 2-0 lead over the Czech Republic before needing to play doubles.
The Swiss have never won the competition formerly known as the Fed Cup, losing the final in 1998 and again last year.
Storm Sanders had already put a point on the board for the Australians with an opening singles win and she then partnered Sam Stosur to a 7-6 (1), 6-7 (5), 10-6 victory over Alicia Barnett and Olivia Nicholls in a nerve-racking doubles match in Glasgow.
Sanders beat Heather Watson 6-4, 7-6 (3) before Britain fought back through Harriet Dart, who won 7-6 (3), 6-2 against Ajla Tomljanovic.
Britain was in the semifinals for the first time since 1981, surpassing pre-event expectations.
Australia, the top-ranked women’s team, will head into the final looking to win the event for an eighth time, and a first time since 1974. The Australians lost in the final in 2019.
The Swiss have also had recent experience of losing the final – Russia beat them in the 2021 title match – but they are back there for another shot after wins in the singles for Viktorija Golubic and Belinda Bencic.
Golubic beat Karolina Muchova 6-4, 6-4 and Bencic saw off Karolina Pliskova 6-2, 7-6 (6).
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