India will have to deal with the challenge of the Latvian team (Ankita Raina / Instagram)
Ankita Raina admits that she plays her best tennis in this tournament known as the first Fed Cup and India will be expected to do her best again when she takes on Ostapenko in the opening match of the playoffs. India is playing in the World Group playoffs for the first time.
Although all things are against the Indians, one thing could be in their favor that this match is being played on the indoor hard court as Latvia has not chosen the clay court after making a surprising decision, while it will give a lot to their players. is. On the indoor court, the hosts will also miss the support of the audience. Both Ankita (174th ranking) and Karman Kaur Thandi (621nd ranking) said that they are ready to give tough competition. Karman Kaur Thandi will face the number one player Anastasia Sevastova (47th ranking) of the host team.
Ankita had fought against Sevastova in Ahmedabad in 2015 and she lost the ITF final to him. Sevastova, however, reached the top 50 rankings after that and then defeated Serena Williams in the 2020 Fed Cup qualifiers against Latvia against the US. Ankita said in the virtual press conference, “We play mostly on hard courts so I am ready for it and am thrilled.” When I represent my country, I will do my best, I am fully prepared. ”
Karaman is making a comeback after staying out due to injury and he said that he is physically ready for this big challenge. He said, “Fast or slow, it does not matter, both Ankita and I would like to play on hard courts.” This is a good opportunity for us. “Asked by Captain Vishal Uppal why did he take Karaman instead of high-ranking Rutuja Bhosle (419), he said that he” felt it from the inside “. All five of my players have worked hard. I think Karman can give us something extra on the first day. This is my inner voice. “Sevastova said that she knew Ankita very well but she had watched YouTube videos to know about Karman’s game. Uppal feels that the absence of viewers will be in India’s favor.
The program is as follows:
Ankita Raina vs Elena Ostapenko
Karman Kaur Thandi vs Anastasia Sevastova
Ankita Raina vs Anastasia Sevastova
Karman Kaur Thandi vs Elena Ostapenko
Sania Mirza and Ankita Raina vs Diana Marsinkevica and Daniela Wiseman
Matches will start at 8:30 pm on Friday and 4:30 pm on Saturday.
The matches will be broadcast live on Eurosport.