ZOE Hives has spearheaded Australia into the Junior Fed Cup world finals.
The Kingston youngster remains undefeated in the Asia/Oceania qualifying tournament after clinching singles and doubles victories in yesterday’s quarter final tie against top seeds India.
Hives’ 6-1, 6-1 victory over Snehadevi Reddy gave the Aussies a 1-0 lead in Bendigo, before India bounced back with victory in the other singles match.
The 15-year-old then partnered with Naiktha Bains to claim a 2-6, 6-4, 6-3 doubles success to secure the win for Australia.
The victory sends the green and gold through to the semi-final stage of the tournament, joining three other countries which have now secured their place for the world finals in Barcelona, Spain, in September.
Hives said it was a big thrill to help her country progress to the world play-offs, despite some nervous moments in yesterday’s deciding doubles contest.
“When we lost the first set 6-2, I was a bit doubtful, but we turned it around pretty good,” Hives told The Courier yesterday.
The Mt Clear Secondary College year 10 student said she has been happy with her tournament so far, having won all of her three singles and two doubles encounters.
“I had been playing really well, and I just wanted to play well this week and it has happened so I’m really happy with that,” she said.
“I have been going well with everything, but my forehand has definitely stepped up.
“My forehand is normally my weapon.”
Hives is expected to play at least one match in today’s semi-final tie against Japan.