April 17, 2016

CLUJ,Romania (AP) Angelique Kerber fought off Simona Halep to clinch a 6-2, 6-2 win while Andrea Petkovic overcame Monica Niculescu to give Germany an insurmountable 3-1 lead on Sunday over Romania in their Fed Cup World Group playoff.

It took Kerber just 67 minutes on the red clay indoor court to win the reverse singles against Halep, who appeared to be struggling from the previous day when she needed almost three hours to beat Petkovic.

For Kerber, it didn't seem so easy,

''It was a tough match, Simona is a tough player,'' Kerber said.

Petkovic later rallied from a disastrous first set to beat Niculescu 0-6, 7-6 (1), 6-3 and confirm Germany's World Group status.

Germany made it 4-1 when it won the final doubles match with Annika Beck and Julia Goerges defeating Alexandra Dulgheru and Irina-Camelia Begu 6-7 (5), 7-6 (4), 10-7.

Kerber won the first match on Saturday against Begu.

The two sides have not played since Germany beat Romania in 1974.

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This story has been corrected to show that Andrea Petkovic played Monica Niculescu on Sunday not Irina Camelia Begu

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