As things stand it looks very much like this year’s Hopman Cup final will be a repeat of last year’s when Switzerland defeated Germany in Perth.
You want to play tough opponents, you want to play the best players before a grand slam, I've played two very good players, and I'm happy to get those matches under my belt Alexander Zverev
The same pairings are playing this year and with Switzerland heading Group B unbeaten with one tie to go against Greece, Germany are matching them in Group A following their second victory of the week by defeating France 2-1.
Both singles rubbers proved tight affairs but Alexander Zverev secured a 2-0 winning lead when he beat Lucas Pouille 6-3 6-7(8) 6-2 in 120-minutes.
Earlier Angelique Kerber had to recover from a set down to defeat a feisty Alice Cornet 5-7 6-2 6-4 in 123-minutes.
The Germans now need to beat the hosts Australia on Friday to secure their place in the final.
Zverev, who missed a match point in a tense second set tiebreak, said the Hopman Cup was ideal preparation for the Australian Open which starts Monday week.
“You want to play tough opponents, you want to play the best players before a grand slam,” the 21-year-old Zverev said. “I’ve played two very good players, and I’m happy to get those matches under my belt.”
As regards his win over Pouille, he added: “Lucas fought well and played really well in the important moments. He’s a very tough opponent, and I think he’s going to do well in the Australian Open.”
Meanwhile Kerber had to rely on her power to gain her victory though both players seemingly suffered with their serves at the start.
“She is a fighter,” Kerber said of Cornet. “I’m just trying to find my game, my rhythm and trying new things on court too. I was exploring the tennis court. For me it’s always good to have a long, close match.”
In the final rubber the French won a consolation point winning the mixed doubles 4-3(4) 4-3(3).