The Bertens / Schuurs duo was defeated in a nerve-racking three-sided squad on the indoor clay court in The Hague Sports Campus by the Belarusian duo Aljaksandra Sasnovich / Aryna Sabalenka: 4-6 6-3 7-6 (8).
In the tiebreak of the third set, so decisive for the whole encounter, Sasnovich and Sabalenka only cashed in their fourth match point. They already led 5-2, but Bertens and Schuurs fought back to 5-5. A special moment took place at 5-2 when Sabalenka received a penalty point for cheering too early, because she thought she already had the point.
With a 6-5 lead, Bertens and Schuurs were two points away from the win. They were 30-0 ahead of Sabalenka’s service, but were unable to finish it.
For Bertens it was the first defeat of the confrontation; she won her singles on both Friday and Saturday.
Through the victory, Belarus secured its participation in the Fed Cup Finals, from 14 to 19 April in Budapest. That tournament is taking place for the first time this year.
For Orange, it is the fifth defeat in a row in the country tournament. The last victory dates from 2017, when Slovakia was defeated. Four defeats followed in a row, each without Bertens.
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