sport

Britain open with Latvia win

Victories for Heather Watson and Johanna Konta handed the British Fed Cup team a 2-1 success over Latvia as their bid to secure a play-off tie for a place in World Group II got off to the perfect start.

Guernsey-born Watson proved too strong for 16-year-old Jelena Ostapenko from Latvia in the opening match, winning 7-5 6-1 at the Syma Event and Conference Centre in Budapest, Hungary.

Then British No 2 Konta claimed her first singles victory in national colours, saving a match point at 5-2 down in the deciding set to secure a gutsy 6-3 4-6 7-5 win against 216th-ranked Diana Marcinkevica.

In the dead rubber doubles encounter Marcinkevica and Ostapenko gained a semblance of revenge by defeating Watson and Jocelyn Rae 1-6 7-5 7-6 (5) after over two hours of battle.

Judy Murray's team of Watson, Konta, Rae and Tara Moore will next face Romania on Friday and hosts Hungary the following day.

Britain - one of 17 teams in Budapest this week - will need to top the four-team group in order to keep their promotion hopes alive.