Billie Jean King Cup 2022: Great Britain vs Czech Republic match updates & results
• 2 MINUTE READ
Follow all the action from Prague as Great Britain take on Czech Republic in the Billie Jean King Cup qualifiers.
- Great Britain 2-3 Czech Republic
- Harriet Dart and Katie Swan lost 6-1, 7-5 on Karolina Muchova and Marketa Vondrousova in doubles decider
- Dart beat 16-year-old Linda Fruhvirtova 6-0, 5-7, 6-2
- Emma Raducanu was defeated 6-1, 6-1 by Vondrousova
- Check out the full draw here
- Watch live on our TikTok and BBC digital channels
Match five: Czechs edge decisive doubles rubber
Karolina Muchova and Marketa Vondrousova clinched the deciding doubles rubber against Harriet Dart and Katie Swan 6-1, 7-5.
The Czechs got off to an electric start, finding themselves 2-0 up after only a few minutes.
Trying to settle into the match, Dart and Swan had to be at their best to set up five game points on the British No.2’s serve but Vondrousova kept finding the answers on the return from the ad side, including a peach of a cross court forehand winner.
The pressure would eventually tell as Muchova and Vondrousova broke again at the first time of asking for 3-0.
A level above in the first set, the Czechs seemed to find the edges of the lines when they needed it most, including a brilliant down the line winner from Muchova facing Swan’s serve at 4-0.
Vondrousova ultimately proved the difference between the two sides this weekend and again, the Brits couldn’t find the response to her venomous groundstrokes as she catapulted the Czechs to win the first set 6-1.
There were optimistic signs for the Brits who made the most of their opponents slow start to the second set with an early break, but failed to back it up on Swan’s serve.
Swan then saved a break point on Dart’s serve with a sliding drop volley, but the Czechs just kept coming and once again Vondrousova ripped a return down the line for a 3-1 lead.
The Brits kept within touching distance after a strong hold from Swan was coupled with some uncharacteristic wayward hitting from the Czechs – including a mis-hit smash at break point down to bring the score to 4-3.
With the match back on serve at 5-5, the Czechs held off the British challenge to keep their lead and quickly turned their attention to attacking Dart’s serve. They made light work of the first point before Swan’s volley sailed long for 0-30. The Czechs gave themselves three chances to seal the tie but only needed one – winning it on a volley winner from the player of the tie, Vondrousova.
Match four: Dart forces doubles decider
Harriet Dart forced a deciding doubles rubber in the Billie Jean King Cup qualifiers with a roller-coaster 6-0, 5-7, 6-2 win over Linda Fruhvirtova.
Dart got off to the perfect start breaking Fruhvirtova and showing huge improvements from her match against Vondrousova on day one. After completing the opening break, Dart held her nerve and gave out a big roar after going 2-0 up.
The Brit continued to pile the pressure on the young Czech and showed great variety in her game to win her third consecutive game with an inch perfect drop shot.
In one of the best performances Dart’s ever given representing Great Britain, she only dropped four points in the last three games to win the opener 6-0 in 29 minutes.
It was more of the same at the start of the second set – a quick break and hold from Dart set her on the front foot from the off. Fruhvirtova could do nothing to stave off the relentless onslaught from the British No.2, hitting seven unforced errors in the first three games of the set – giving Dart a 3-0 lead.
Serving for the match at 5-2 and then on match points in the next game, Dart was just missing that killer blow to see off her opponent.
The 16-year-old Czech reached the fourth round of the Miami Open only a few weeks ago and with the match on the line showed her quality. She hit three winners to complete two back-to-back breaks to level the set at 5-5.
Break points came and went for Dart – who required some medical attention to a cut on her knuckles – and eventually Fruhvirtova completed her fifth consecutive game to complete her comeback.
The frustration looked like it may continue for Dart in the third set, but the Brit quickly turned things around. She lost another two break points but on the third time of asking she grinded out a brilliant point to take the lead.
The British No.2 never let her head go down after a disappointing second set and after holding for 2-0, pulled the trigger on a series of winners to go three up.
There were troubling signs as the Czech came back once again from 5-0 to 5-2, but Dart kept it together and with another two match points wrapped up her first Billie Jean King Cup singles win.
Match three: Vondrousova restores Czechs lead
Marketa Vondrousova put Czech Republic 2-1 in front after defeating an injury-struck Emma Raducanu 6-1, 6-1 on day two.
With colder and windier conditions than day one in Prague, Raducanu got off to a slow start as the 2019 French Open runner-up punished a lofty drop shot to set up and eventually take break points in the first game of the match.
Building on her emphatic win over Harriet Dart yesterday, Vondrousova wasted no time in pulling 3-0 ahead. Some impressive baseline hitting and that trademark backhand drop shot were working to full effect, but Raducanu upped the intensity in the fourth game, showing the Czech what she’s made of.
Raducanu seemed to have given herself a lifeline by reclaiming one of her breaks, but once again struggled on serve. The world No.32 appeared to have all the answers to whatever Raducanu threw at her and yet another delicate drop shot completed her third consecutive break.
One of the best clay court players on the WTA Tour, Vondrousova barely put a foot wrong in the opener, with her relentless consistency and pinpoint accuracy proving too much for the British No.1 – taking the first set 6-1.
Raducanu needed a fast response at the start of the second after a short medical timeout. Vondrousova looked slightly off the pace as a double fault gifted the Brit two break points but Raducanu was visibly frustrated as she failed to seize her chance.
Struggling with an injury, the US Open champion was finding it difficult to move around the court, losing her fifth service game in a row.
At 2-0 up Vondrousova suffered a brief lapse in concentration to lose her second service game of the match – hitting three double faults and launching a forehand well long.
However, in the end, the injury seemed to get the better of Raducanu. She was forced to leave several shots she would normally make with ease, instead relying on sheer power to try and keep the points as short as possible.
A stunning lob from Vondrousova clinched her seventh break, which she backed up with a comfortable hold to win the match in an hour.
Day one results
Emma Raducanu brought Great Britain back on level terms at the end of day one in the Billie Jean King Cup with a 7-5, 7-5 victory over Tereza Martincova.
The Brits now go into day two with everything to play for, with Raducanu kicking off against Marketa Vondrousova.
Making her tour-level debut on clay, Raducanu settled into the match well with an easy hold to shake off any nerves before some aggressive hitting against the Czech’s serve – including a beautiful backhand winner – sent her 2-0 up.
Martincova – also playing in her first Billie Jean King Cup rubber – refused to let the first set slip away from her. She punished Raducanu for a couple of unforced errors to break back and then staved off two break points for 2-2.
The Czech thought she made a breakthrough at 4-4 after a few errors from the 19-year-old Brit gave her the break. However, with Martincova serving for the set, Raducanu changed up her tactics, hitting with more height and depth to throw off her opponent and draw level once more.
The world No.12 held to restore her lead in the longest game of the match and finished the set with yet more powerful baseline hitting, forcing Martincova to blast her groundstrokes long.
Martincova came out in the second set all gins blazing. Any signs of disappointment in losing the first set were quickly squashed after she broke Raducanu and holding for a 2-0 lead. Raducanu seemed to have lost her rhythm as a series of errors allowed Martincova to extend her lead further.
But after going 4-1 down, Raducanu found her serve once again and turned around the set to 4-4. Serving to take the lead for the first time in the set, Raducanu hit a blistering forehand winner down the line to save a break point to eventually come out on top in another marathon game.
A gutsy performance from the Brit ended in an emphatic win after gutsy few points in the twelfth game again forced a few pivotal mistakes from the Czech.
Czech Republic take an early advantage in the Billie Jean King Cup qualifiers with Marketa Vondrousova defeating Harriet Dart 6-1, 6-0.
A double fault from Vondrousova gifted Dart the break in the opening game but the Czech star quickly settled herself and – levelling the scores at 1-1 with a delicate drop shot.
Both players seeming to favour the return game, Vondrousova edged a close service game, before completing back-to-back breaks with another sumptuous backhand drop shot from the Czech.
Dart had a break point opportunity at 3-1 down, but Vondrousova found a deadly body serve to stay on track and needed help from the net cord to stay ahead.
The British No.2 couldn’t find her rhythm on serve and the 2019 French Open runner-up took the last two games without losing a point – winning six games in a row.
Dart tried to play more attacking in the first game of the second set but the world No.32 found the answer for everything Dart threw at her, breaking for a fourth consecutive time.
A glimmer of hope came for Dart in the fourth game, but she couldn’t capitalise on two break point opportunities after two perfectly-timed winners from Vondrousova.
From 4-0 there was little Dart could do to bring a halt to what was a masterclass in clay court tennis from Vondrousova with the match finishing in 57 minutes.