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Page last updated at 11:36 GMT, Saturday, 2 January 2010

Hosts Australia lose to Romania in Hopman Cup opener

Sorana Cirstea
Teenager Cirstea won both her matches against the top seeds

Top seeds Australia suffered a surprise defeat to Romania on the opening day of the Hopman Cup in Perth.

Sorana Cirstea, 19, was the star for the Romanians, beating world number 13 Sam Stosur 3-6 6-4 6-3 in the opener.

Former men's number one Lleyton Hewitt defeated Victor Hanescu 3-6 6-3 7-6 (7-2) to level the tie.

But Cirstea and Hanescu stunned Stosur and Hewitt 7-5 6-1 in the mixed doubles to dent Australia's hopes of reaching the final.

"For me today was a perfect day," said Cirstea.

"I had a very good singles match when I beat Sam who is 13 in the world and then going out and playing mixed with Victor for the first time and winning - I cannot expect more than this."

Andy Murray and Laura Robson - 16 later this month - are pairing up to provide a British challenge at the competition for the first time since Jeremy Bates and Jo Durie lost in the first round in 1992.

Their campaign begins against Kazakhstan on Monday, before matches against Germany on Wednesday and Russia on Friday.

The winners of the two groups will go through to the final next Saturday, 9 January.

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see also
Murray hopes for Grand Slam boost
31 Dec 09 |  Tennis
Murray & Robson GB team confirmed
27 Oct 09 |  Tennis
Teenager Cirstea shocks Jankovic
01 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Slovakia claim Hopman Cup glory
09 Jan 09 |  Tennis

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