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Tennis Canada – Cluj-Napoca, Romania, February 10, 2018 – Canada faces a 0-2 deficit after Saturday’s singles of its Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group II tie against Romania in Cluj-Napoca. Carol Zhao (Richmond Hill, ON), Canada’s no. 1 singles player this weekend, fell 6-2, 6-2 to Sorana Cirstea while Bianca Andreescu (Mississauga, ON) was defeated 6-3, 6-7(4) et 6-2 by Irina-Camelia Begu.

Cirstea needed 54 minutes to defeat Zhao, earning five breaks of serve in the match compared to the Canadian’s one. The Romanian, ranked no. 38 in the world, also hit 16 winners while Zhao had just five. The 22-year-old Canadian was playing in her first Fed Cup singles match.

“She definitely played well, but there were a lot of things I would have liked to have done better,” Zhao said following the loss. “I wasn’t able to win a few important points in the first set and it could have made a difference if I was able to stay with her for longer.”

For her part, Andreescu erased a set and a break deficit against Begu in the second match to force a decisive third set. There was a break before the start of the final frame so that the 17-year-old Canadian could receive treatment during a medical timeout. The delay seemed to break Andreescu’s rhythm and the Romanian jumped out to an early lead and never looked back. The first meeting between Andreescu and Begu last one hour, 38 minutes.

“The match today was a battle between both of us. I fought, I gave all I had and she did the same thing, but she played the important points better. I think she had more energy than I did, especially in the end,” Andreescu commented.

Sunday preview

Canada needs to win three matches on Sunday in order to advance to the World Group I play-offs. Zhao will be first on court against Begu. That match will be followed by Andreescu vs. Cirstea. If Canada is able to level the tie at 2-2, the doubles match will decide the outcome. At Friday’s draw, Canadian captain Sylvain Bruneau nominated Gabriela Dabrowski (Ottawa) and Katherine Sebov (Toronto) while Romania’s captain Florin Segarceanu nominated Ana Bogan and Raluca Olaru. Captains have until one hour before the first singles match and ten minutes before the following ones to make changes to their lineup.

ZHAO versus BEGU – first meeting between the two players
 

ZHAO BEGU
22 years old 27 years old
World no. 138 World no. 37
Career-high ranking: no. 138 (January 2018) Career-high ranking: no. 22 (August 2016)
2nd Fed Cup tie 15th Fed Cup tie
0-2 record in Fed Cup 12-9 record in Fed Cup

ANDREESCU versus CIRSTEA – first meeting between the two players
 

ANDREESCU CIRSTEA
17 years 27 years old
World no. 173 World no. 38
Career-high ranking: no. 143 (July 2017) Career-high ranking: no. 21(August 2013)
6e rencontre de la Fed Cup 18e rencontre de la Fed Cup
Fiche de 7-2 à la Fed Cup Fiche de 16-12 à la Fed Cup

 

  DABROWSKI    SEBOV    BOGDAN     OLARU    
Doubles ranking No. 11   – No. 564 No. 45
Fed Cup doubles record   4-5 1-1 0-0 3-7

Match Schedule 

Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group II first round tie
Canada vs. Romania
February 10-11, 2018
Sala Polivalenta Cluj-Napoca, Cluj-Napoca
Score 0-2 
 

Date Match Result
Saturday February 10     First singles match Cirstea b. Zhao 6-2, 6-2
Saturday February 10 Second singles match     Begu b. Andreescu 6-3, 6-7(4), 6-2   
Sunday February 11 Third singles match Zhao vs. Begu
Sunday February 11 Fourth singles match Andreescu vs. Cirstea
Sunday February 11 Doubles match Dabrowski/Sebov vs. Bogdan/Olaru

Canada is part of World Group II for the first time since February 2016. Canada earned its best result in Fed Cup in 1988, reaching the semifinals. Canada has also reached the quarter-finals on three occasions in 1964, 1967, and 1987.
 
Fed Cup by BNP Paribas is the biggest women’s team sporting event in the world with 98 countries competing in 2018. Founded in 1963, the competition is celebrating its 55th anniversary this year.
 
The matches are being shown live on Sportsnet NOW.   
 
About Fed Cup
Fed Cup by BNP Paribas is the World Cup of Tennis. It is the largest annual international team competition in women’s sport, with 98 nations entered in 2018. The competition is 55 years old, having been founded in 1963. The title sponsor is BNP Paribas (Official Bank of Fed Cup). Adecco (Official HR Sponsor) is an international sponsor, while beIN SPORTS is the Official Global Media Rights Partner. Follow all the action on www.fedcup.com and www.fedcup.com/es
 
About Tennis Canada
Founded in 1890, Tennis Canada is a non-profit, national sport association with a mission to lead the growth of tennis in Canada and a vision to become a world-leading tennis nation. We value teamwork, passion, integrity, innovation and excellence. Tennis Canada owns and operates the premier Rogers Cup presented by National Bank WTA and ATP World Tour events, 8 professional ITF sanctioned events and financially supports 15 other professional tournaments in Canada. Tennis Canada operates junior national training centres/programs in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. Tennis Canada is a proud member of the International Tennis Federation, the Canadian Olympic Committee, the Canadian Paralympic Committee and the International Wheelchair Tennis Association, and serves to administer, sponsor and select the teams for Davis Cup, Fed Cup, the Olympic and Paralympic Games and all wheelchair, junior and senior national teams. Tennis Canada invests its surplus into tennis development. For more information on Tennis Canada please visit our Web site at: www.tenniscanada.com and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
 
 

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Media Contacts:
 
Valerie Tetreault, Manager, Communications and Media Relations
         514-273-1515 ext. 6259, vtetreault@tenniscanada.com                  
               
Victoria Jaklin, Coordinator, Communications and Media Relations
       514-273-1515 ext. 6291, or vjaklin@tenniscanada.c