Strong start for Canada in Billie Jean King Cup final. Marina Stakušić, 258e of the world, defeated the Italian Martina Trevisan, 43e of the world, in two sets 7-5 and 6-3, on Sunday morning in Spain.
Stakušić, the big discovery of the week in the Canadian clan, played as she did the entire tournament: like a true professional. Flawless defense, explosive, fast, durable, was everywhere on the field. All this enabled him to win.
Leylah Annie Fernandez will now look to defeat Jasmine Paolini to give Canada its first historic triumph at this tournament.
“I am very happy and honored to be able to play this week,” Stakušić said after the victory.
It was honestly the best experience of my life. I didn’t expect this when I came in this week, but I’m so happy with the result.
The first circuit between Stakušić and Trevisan can be cut with scissors. If the Canadian was nervous at the beginning of the match, it did not show at all in her game, after she gave herself a shutout, she took away her serve.
At the defensive end, the young 18-year-old athlete played patiently during long rallies, forcing Trevisan to make mistakes. At the start of the match, the Italian had a lot of problems with the first ball.
With the result 4-1 in favor of Stakušić, there was a reversal. Trevisan regained the lead and began to dictate the pace. The Canadian slowed down, started making weaker decisions, missed shots and struggled with the first ball.
But while trailing 5-4, after being broken twice by the Italian, Stakušić regained her confidence, finding her beautiful crosses and taking advantage of Trevisan errors, especially on forehands. She won the first round.
Stakušić continued in the same style in the second round. Without forcing any games, she led the opponent towards unforced errors. Broken in the first game, the teenager answered her 30-year-old opponent four times instead of once.
The Canadian had to work hard to finish the duel; at 5-2 she missed four match points before losing the point. Serving after that, she finally put the final nail in Trevisan’s coffin.
Trevisan made 34 unforced errors in the match, compared to Stakušić’s 20.