Ivanovic battles past Russia to take Serbia ahead

Ana Ivanovic battled back from a set down to defeat Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and put Serbia back ahead at 2-1 in the Fed Cup semi-final with Russia here on Sunday.

Updated: April 22, 2012 18:18 IST
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Moscow: Ana Ivanovic battled back from a set down to defeat Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and put Serbia back ahead at 2-1 in the Fed Cup semi-final with Russia here on Sunday.

Ivanovic, currently 15th in the world, won 3-6, 6-0, 6-3 in one hour 42 minutes to record her fourth win over Pavlyuchenkova in as many head-to-head meetings.

"Nastia (Pavlyuchenkova) shocked me with her strong start and I felt I lost my nerve completely," Ivanovic said. "Luckily, I managed to find my best form later in the match to win it."

"It's never easy to start in the Fed Cup, but I found the right rhythm in the second set and stayed with it all the way way."

The 20-year-old Pavlyuchenkova came into the match full of confidence, producing three breaks from the start for a commanding 5-0 lead before Ivanovic managed to win her first game.

Ivanovic, the French Open champion in 2008, broke again in the eighth game to narrow the gap, but Pavlyuchenkova grabbed her fourth break to take the set in 40 minutes.

The second set resembled the first, but this time it was Ivanovic who was in the driving seat with with three breaks of serve to level at one set all in just 25 minutes.

In the deciding set the 24-year-old Ivanovic was in complete command again breaking Pavlyuchenkova's serve twice to take a 4-0 lead before the Moscow resident reduced the arrears with a break in the eighth game.

But Ivanovic produced another break, sealing her victory on the clay court of Moscow Megasport arena with a forehand drive on her first match point.

The match between two-time Grand Slam winner Svetlana Kuznetsova and former world number one Jelena Jankovic and the doubles showdown will complete the schedule.

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  • Ana Ivanovic
  • Tennis
  • Football
  • Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova
  • Nadia Petrova
  • Maria Sharapova
  • Venus Williams

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