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Youth and experience merge for Germany win

6 January 2016, by

It came down to a match tiebreak in the mixed doubles, but Germany claimed its first win at the Hopman Cup after Sabine Lisicki and Alexander Zverev defeated Caroline Garcia and Kenny De Schepper 6-4 6-7 10-6 at Perth Arena today.

Youth and experience combined well early for the Germans, Lisicki’s big serve and relentless competitiveness, complementing Zverev’s power and tremendous reach. With Garcia broken in the fifth game, they closed out the set in 30 minutes.

But as the French pair found some rhythm, the challenge intensified for the Germans – Garcia and Lisicki exchanged service breaks in the second and third games, with that pattern repeated eight games later to send the set into a tiebreak. France won that, ensuring a suspense-filled match tiebreak.

    Zverev, who’d earlier defeated De Schepper 6-2 6-2 in the men’s singles rubber, fired up some of his biggest serves with devastating effect. The fastest was 204 km/h and another 200 km/h missive helped complete the 95-minute win.

    Showing a composure that belies his 18 years, Zverev is quickly adding to his “ next big thing” buzz in his Hopman Cup debut.

    Venturing often into the net against De Schepper, the German showcased a style that’s quickly captivating new fans. “I was really positive all the way through, really aggressive,” said the teenager, who is clearly focused on some long-term goals.

    “If I can go forward more often it’s onnly going to help me later in my career.”