Australia Ousted 2-1 in United Cup Semi-Finals by Germany

Julian Miller
By:
Julian Miller
10/01/2024
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Australia Narrowly Falls to Germany in United Cup Semi-Finals

Australia put up a valiant effort in their United Cup semi-final against Germany but ultimately fell in a final set tiebreaker. 

News Insights

  • Tomljanovic and Kerber fight out a tough three-setter.
  • De Minaur continues his brilliant form.
  • Career high ranking is on the horizon for De Minaur.
  • Mixed doubles rubber match comes down to the wire.

Australia’s United Cup squad was just barely unable to progress to their home tournament’s final as they fell 2-1 to Germany in the semi-final. Each match in their tie with Germany went to third and deciding sets while a gruelingly long final set tiebreak proved the difference in the matchup.  

Tomljanovic Opens the Tie with a Three-set Battle 

Ajla Tomljanovic started off Australia’s semi-final tie with a matchup against former world no.1 Angelique Kerber.  
 
Kerber started hot, breaking Tomljanovic in the opening game of the set to take a 1-0 lead. However, Tomljanovic took the next five games in a row. Kerber was able to find her footing again and win three more games before Tomljanovic finally closed out the set 6-4.  
 
The second set was all Kerber as she was aggressive with her shot selection and seemingly overwhelmed the Aussie en route to a 6-2 set victory.  
 
The third set saw a much closer fight. Down 4-3 and returning, Tomljanovic produced a phenomenal game to tie the match.  
 
Tomljanovic was then forced to garner another break at 5-6 with Kerber serving as the Aussie forced a tiebreak. She worked her way to two match points in the tiebreak but was unable to convert.  
 
Kerber eventually found the breakthrough winning the tiebreak 9-7 and the match to give Germany a 1-0 lead.  

De Minaur Shows his Exquisite Form Again 

It was then up to Alex De Minaur to keep Australia alive against world no.7 Alex Zverev. De Minaur is in the midst of one of the best short stretches of his career coming off wins against Taylor Fritz and Novak Djokovic.  
 
All the pressure was on De Minaur as he needed a win to keep Australia alive. The first set saw very little separating the two competitors as they each went back and forth holding serve with relative ease until the set reached 5-5.  
 
It was Zverev that drew first blood as he broke De Minaur and then calmly served out the set 7-5.  
 
De Minaur didn’t allow the set loss to affect him as he began the second set confidently. He then held his nerve in the fifth game of the set, saving three break points.  
 
He seemingly built off that hold and broke Zverev in the next game. He would hold that lead all the way to a 6-3 set victory.  
 
De Minaur was able to build off his second set momentum and break Zverev early in the third. That turned out to be the only break of the set as De Minaur would go on to win it 6-4 and tie the series 1-1.  
 
With the win, De Minaur will vault into the top 10 of the ATP rankings for the first time in his young career.  

Mixed Doubles Matchup Goes the Distance 

The semi-final matchup came down to the mixed doubles match between the undefeated duo of Storm Hunter and Matt Ebden against Alex Zverev and Laura Siegemund.  
 
It was apparent that this was going to be a close one from the very beginning. Neither team was giving an inch en route to a first set tiebreak. It was the Germans who flexed their muscle first winning the tiebreak 7-2.  
 
Set number two had a nearly identical outlook only this time, when the tiebreak came around, it was the Australians who took it 7-2.  
 
The third and deciding set was a tiebreaker to 10 points. Given the tight nature of the match however, it was fitting that it went well past that number. Each team fought off multiple match points as the set kept stringing along.  
 
Finally, at 14-13 for the Germans, Storm Hunter sailed a forehand long as Germany took the match and the tie.

Australia fought tooth and nail in their semi-final but were just narrowly defeated by a determined Germany squad that would go on to win it all. Australia’s participants gave it all they had and performed brilliantly on home soil treating their fans to a series of riveting matches.