France claim first Fed Cup win since 2003

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Perth (Australia): France on Sunday won the Fed Cup for the first time since 2003 with a close 3-2 win over Australia.

Kristina Mladenovic was instrumental in the decisive doubles match, in which she partnered with Caroline Garcia to orchestrate a 6-4, 6-3 win over Ashleigh Barty and Samantha Stosur to give France their third title in the women’s team event.

Earlier on Sunday, Mladenovic upset Barty, the top ranked singles player in the world, in a three-set thriller to give France the lead.

“It’s a lot of emotion to share this with (Garcia) after we failed on the last step three years ago. We just wanted to take this little revenge for ourselves,” Mladenovic said.

Earlier, world No. 51 Ajla Tomljanovic rebounded from a dispiriting performance in her Australian Fed Cup debut on Saturday against Mladenovic to record a 6-4, 7-5 victory over Pauline Parmentier in one hour and 33 minutes.

“I’m really glad I got a second chance and that I got a win,” Tomljanovic said.

(Agencies)