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Isha, Ankita help India beat Philippines 2-0 in Fed Cup

By Staff
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Seoul, Apr 20 (UNI) Left hand-right hand combination of Isha Lakhani and Ankita Bhambri won their singles rubbers without much ado as India blanked lowly Philippines 2-0 in the Fed Cup Asia/Oceania Zone Group I match at Olympic Park here today.

Left-hander Isha Lakhani gave India a flying start, thrashing a lowly Denise Dy in straigth set.

With more than 750 rungs separating them in the singles ranking, the Filipino proved no match for her younger and more agile Indian opponent who did not concede a single game in the first set.

Dy put up a gritty show in the second set and the see-saw affair was stretched to the tie-break but again the Indian proved much superior to her more experienced opponent and she clinched the set to seal the match in her favour.

In the second singles match, Ankita Bhambri began well but dropped a set before raising her game to tame Czarina-Mae Arevalo 6-4, 6-7(2), 6-2 and make it 2-0 for India.

Ranked much higher than her opponent, Ankita looked a bit rusty even though she won the first set but Arevalo, ranked 337 places below Ankita, put up a stiff resistance in the second set and clinch it via tie-breaker.

Jolted out of complacence, Ankita was her usual self in the third set and she dropped just two games to clinch the issue and wrap up the match.

India play Chinese Taipei in their next Pool B match.

Though Indian captain Enrico Pipperno rested World No 40 Sania Mirza and US-based Shikha Uberoi for the tie, both the frontline players are expected to return for the tougher encounter with Chinese Taipei.

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