AGENCE FRANCE PRESSE
Published — Sunday 4 November 2012
Last update 5 November 2012 12:58 am
PRAGUE: The Czech Republic won a second straight Fed Cup here yesterday after Lucie Safarova gave them an unbeatable 3-1 lead over Serbia by thrashing Jelena Jankovic 6-1, 6-1.
Safarova, the world No. 17, cruised past 22-ranked Jankovic in just an hour and 17 minutes.
"It's fantastic because it happened at home, in Prague, in front of our fans. It's unbelievable," a triumphant Safarova said just after the game.
"It was one of the best games I've played in my career," she added.
The Czechs stumbled earlier yesterday after Serbia's Ana Ivanovic reduced their lead from Saturday to 2-1 by beating Petra Kvitova 6-3, 7-5.
Ivanovic, the world number 12, needed an hour and 46 minutes to sink Kvitova, the world number eight, who was grappling with the effects of an illness.
But Serbia, playing their first final ever, never had a chance to come close as Safarova rallied.
On Saturday, Kvitova and Safarova eased past their rivals in straight sets to give the Czechs a 2-0 lead.
Safarova first beat Ivanovic 6-4, 6-3 on the hardcourt of Prague's O2 Arena, and Kvitova then cruised past Jankovic 6-4, 6-1.
Last year, the Czech Republic lifted the trophy after beating Russia in Moscow 3-2.
Former Czechoslovakia, which split peacefully into the Czech Republic and Slovakia in 1993, won the Fed Cup five times between 1975 and 1988.