Venus leads Americans to victory

Former world number one Venus Williams helped the US to a 2-1 win over South Africa in the Hopman Cup on Sunday.

The seven-time Grand Slam champion beat Chanelle Scheepers 4-6, 6-2, 6-3 secure help secure the tie for the Americans in Group B of the mixed team's tournament.

Big-hitting Kevin Anderson levelled the tie for South Africa with a surprise win with over fellow big man John Isner in the men's singles, the Americans showed their class to win the deciding mixed doubles match in straight sets.

Williams played in her first competitive event since the start of October and started the match slowly, but got better as match went on and won comfortably in the end.

She hasn't won a Grand Slam title since winning at Wimbledon in 2008 and slipped down to 134th in the rankings last year after suffering from Sjgren's Syndrome - an autoimmune disease.

Speaking after her victory over Scheepers, the 32-year-old noted that she believes she has created a good platform for the 2013 season.

"Last year was so awesome for me, winning a tournament and getting to the Olympics and getting a gold," she said.

"I was extremely happy last year and moved up quite a few spots.

"This year is just about building on it and continuing to play deep into the draws and put myself in positions to play well deep into the tournaments.

"I always feel that way," she continued.

"That's how you have to feel, you have to be positive.

"I try to be positive and tell myself I'm the best now. It doesn't happen every time but you've got to have that mind frame."

Earlier in the day, Anderson - the world number 32 - shocked the 14-ranked Isner 7-6 (7/0), 7-6 (7/5), but the Americans secured an easy 6-3, 6-2 win in the mixed doubles.

In Sunday's second rubber, France's Jo-Wilfried Tsonga failed to help his country to a win, winning his singles match before sawing Spain come from behind to win 2-1.

Tsonga was in top form in the first match of the tie, beating Fernando Verdasco 7-5 6-3, but the Spaniards bounced back to level matters when Anabel Medina Garrigues beat Mathilde Johansson 6-3 6-2.

In the decisive mixed doubles clash Verdasco and Medina Garrigues combined once again to seal 6-3 6-3 win to make it two wins from two, after their victory over South Africa on Saturday.