Kerber draws Germany level with Switzerland 1-1 in Fed Cup
Belinda Bencic of Switzerland returns a ball to Andrea Petkovic of Germany during the Fed Cup World Group first round tennis match between Germany and Switzerland in Leipzig, Germany, Saturday, Feb. 6, 2016. (AP Photo/Jens Meyer)
LEIPZIG, Germany (AP) Australian Open champion Angelique Kerber defeated Timea Bacsinszky 6-1, 6-3 to draw Germany level with Switzerland 1-1 after the opening day of their Fed Cup first-round tie on Saturday.
Playing one week after claiming her first Grand Slam title with an three-set victory over Serena Williams in Melbourne, the world No. 2 showed no tiredness as she wrapped up the first set in 30 minutes and then converted her fifth match point to beat the 15th-ranked Bacsinszky in 1 hour 14 minutes.
''There's nothing to complain about,'' Germany captain Barbara Rittner said of Kerber. ''There has been such unbelievable development. She is now really the No. 1 that you'd want.''
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Belinda Bencic earlier defeated Andrea Petkovic 6-3, 6-4 to give Switzerland a 1-0 lead.
Petkovic started well and raced into a 2-0 lead but 16 unforced errors cost her dearly as she lost the first set. Bencic converted all three of her break opportunities to wrap it up in just 35 minutes.
The 23rd-ranked German improved in the second set but the 18-year-old Bencic, ranked 11th, converted one of her four break opportunities to win the match.
The reverse singles are scheduled for Sunday, to be followed by the doubles rubber that should see Australian Open doubles champion Martina Hingis in action for Switzerland.
Hingis, who won in Melbourne with Sania Mirza, will line up alongside Viktorija Golubic against Annika Beck and Anna-Lena Groenefeld, unless there are any late changes.
Germany, which finished runner-up in 2014, holds a 4-1 record over Switzerland. The winner faces Romania or the Czech Republic in April's semifinals.