Spain beats Poland to advance to ATP Cup final

Tennis

SYDNEY — Roberto Bautista Agut clinched Spain’s spot in the ATP Cup final with a 7-6 (6), 2-6, 7-6 (5) victory over Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz on Friday.

In the opening singles match, Pablo Carreno Busta gave Spain the advantage with a 6-2, 6-1 win against late replacement Jan Zielinski. Kamil Majchrzak went 3-0 for Poland in the group stages but was forced into isolation due to a positive COVID-19 test.

Russia and Canada will meet Saturday to play for the other spot in Sunday’s final.

Two years ago, Bautista Agut played a leading role during Spain’s run to the final, which Serbia won. The 33-year-old Bautista Agut has won all four of his matches at No. 1 singles in this tournament to lead the way for the two-time finalists.

“It’s a match I’ll always remember. Both of us could have got the win today,” Carreno Busta said. “This is our game, this is tennis, and today I was the one who got the win.”

Majchrzak, who is experiencing minor symptoms from his illness, announced his positive COVID-19 test moments before he was due to step on court to face Carreno Busta.

Hurkacz saved five match points before finally succumbing to Bautista Agut.

“Sometimes you get the win on the first [match] point. He played two or three lines in a row, but sometimes you stay focused like today, you keep working, and finally you lose the tiebreak,” Bautista Agut said. “But today I kept working and I got the win.”

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