ITF Fed Cup: Robson Just Falls Short in Key Third Rubber

By Ros Satar

Paula Ormaechea (ARG) def. Laura Robson (GBR) 6-4, 4-6, 6-2

Laura Robson fell just short of the mark of putting Britain into the lead, in the third World Group II play-off tie, against Argentina.

The British no. 1 saved three match points against her in total, but just could not get the better of the clay-courter, ranked 100 places below her.

Paula Ormaechea made the stronger start as a rash of unforced errors handed the Argentinian an early advantage.

The pair traded breaks, keeping the home team just ahead, with five successive breaks of serve.

Finally, Ormaechea managed a hold, and Robson followed suit, forcing the Argentinian to serve the first set out.

An forehand dumped into the net gave Argentina a one-set lead.

The British 19-year-old had to call upon all her tour experience to come back from relinquishing an early break at the start of the second set.

Saving two break points, Robson avoided going down a double break, following it up with a valuable break back to keep her chances alive.

Despite being distracted by whistles from the crowd during her second serve, Robson dug in to keep ahead on serve.

This time it was Ormaechea’s turn to succumb to a run of errors, despite saving one set point, as Britain levelled the match.

Despite a strong start to the third set, with a hold to love, Robson was broken in the third game.

Robson had to fight to claw back two break points, but a double-fault put Ormaechea up by a double break.

The British no. 1 had to dig very deep, saving two match points to regain one of the breaks.

It took two match points (her fourth in total) before Ormaechea could take the third rubber.

Earlier in the day, the decision was confirmed that the Argentinian no. 2 would be playing against Elena Baltacha, who has had to retire in her first match since returning from injury.

However, Anne Keothavong has been struggling with a foot injury and is pencilled in for the doubles rubber, should it be required.