India kept their date with the final after cruising to a 2-1 win in their last pool engagement against New Zealand in the Fed Cup Asia-Oceania Zonal qualifying tie in Seoul on Friday.
Shikha Uberoi demolished Kairangi Vano 6-1, 6-3 before Sania Mirza breezed past Ellen Barry 6-2, 6-4 in the singles rubbers to see India top pool B and book their berth in the Group 1 final to be played on Saturday.
India’s unbeaten record, however, was broken as they lost the inconsequential doubles rubber, Ankita Bhambri and Isha Lakhani losing 6-4, 0-6, 1-6 to Leanne Baker and Marina Erakovic.
In the final, the Indians will take on Australia who topped pool A with a 3-0 win over hosts Korea in another match at the Olympic Park Tennis Centre.
Meanwhile, Indian captain Enrico Piperno said the Kiwis played a “decent” match against Shikha and Sania.
“I am happy our girls had a good contest because that will keep them ready for the final”, he said.
Piperno said he was banking on Shikha beating Australia’s number two Nicole Pratt since the Aussie’s doubles combination of Samantha Stosur and Rennae Stubbs would be tough to beat.
Sania would be playing Stosur in the other singles.
“For us to win tomorrow, we have to win both the singles. Stosur is ranked world number one and Stubbs is six,” he said.
“So beating them in doubles would be a tall order. Sania has had some good doubles results (on the WTA Tour), so that should help (our confidence).”
The winners of the final go through to the World Group play-off in July this year. (PTI)