2014/07/31

Draw Made for 2015 Fed Cup

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(June 4, 2014) The Draw for the 2015 Fed Cup by BNP Paribas was held at the Tenniseum at Roland Garros in Paris on Wednesday. First round ties will take place on February 7-8 2015. The 2014 finalists were automatically the top two seeds in the 2015 World Group, while the remaining seeds were based on the latest ITF Fed Cup Nations Ranking of April 21, 2014.

 

2015 World Group

 

First round (7-8 February)

 

Canada [c] v Czech Republic [s]
Italy [s] [c] v France
Poland [c] [*]  v Russia [s]
Germany [s] [c] v Australia

2015 World Group II

 

First round (7-8 February)
Netherlands [c] v Slovakia [s]
Romania [c] [*] v Spain [s]
Sweden [c] v Switzerland [s]
Argentina [s] [c] v USA

Key

[s] = seeded nation

[c] = choice of ground

[*] = choice of ground decided by lot

 

2015 Fed Cup dates

 

World Group/World Group II first round: 7-8 February

World Group semifinals, World Group/World Group II play-offs: 18-19 April

World Group Final: 14-15 November

 

The 2014 Fed Cup by BNP Paribas Final between Czech Republic and Germany will take place in Czech Republic on 8-9 November. The venue will be confirmed in due course.

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France Edges USA in Fed Cup World Group Play-Offs

 

Caroline Garcia photo by Christopher Levy @tennis_shots

Caroline Garcia photo by Christopher Levy @tennis_shots

 

(April 20, 2014) The Fed Cup World Group Play-off tie between France and the USA came down to the final match – the doubles rubber. The doubles team of Caroline Garcia and Virginie Razzano led France to a 3-2 victory over the United States on Sunday with 6-2, 7-5 over Sloane Stephens and Madison Keys at the Chaifetz Arena on the campus of Saint Louis University.

“She was totally amazing, unbelievable,” France captain Amelie Mauresmo said of Garcia who also won both of her singles rubbers. “She really rose to the occasion and was fearless.”

“Again with both singles and doubles, with the help of Virginie in the doubles. “I think she loved Fed Cup.”I’m happy for her.”

“She really stood up to the occasion, she rose to this occasion being fearless completely, being great, and supported by the whole group, the whole team.”

 

“She was the star of the weekend,” USA captain Mary Jo Fernandez said pf Garcia. “I never thought that she got nervous in any of the matches. She’s really aggressive and it’s all coming together.”

 

“I like her game a lot. I’ve liked it for a long time. She’s much more disciplined now with her shot selection.

“She’s a great athlete. She didn’t miss many returns today in the doubles, and in the singles she was really aggressive. So I like her game. I’ve always liked her game. Now it’s all coming together.”

 

In Sunday’s first match of the day, Sloane Stephens, the United States’ top-ranked player, faced Virginie Razzano, who replaced Alize Cornet in singles after Cornet suffered a leg injury. Stephens won her first-ever Fed Cup singles match, defeating Razzano, 6-2, 6-4, in one hour and seven minutes. Stephens and Razzano had never played each other before this tie. Stephens is now 1-2 in singles play in Fed Cup competition and Razzano is 10-5.

 

The second singles match featured Madison Keys, 19, and Caroline Garcia, 20, where Garcia won her second singles match this weekend, defeating Keys, 6-4, 6-3. Garcia won her first WTA singles title last weekend in Bogota, Colombia, as well as the doubles title. Keys is now 1-2 in Fed Cup singles play.

 

France’s win means they have qualified for the World Group in 2015 and will compete for the Fed Cup championship. The U.S. will compete in World Group II in 2015 for just the second time since the World Group format was instituted in 1995 (the U.S. competed in the World Group II in 2012).

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Fed Cup Results for April 20, 2014

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(April 20, 2014) The ITF has announced the final results for the 2014 Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group semifinals, and World Group and World Group II play-offs taking place on  April 19-20.

Czech Republic will host Germany in the Fed Cup Final on 8-9 November. In the semifinals, Czech Republic overcame Italy 4-0 in Ostrava, while Germany defeated Australia 3-1 in Brisbane.

Canada, France, Poland and Russia all won their World Group play-off ties and will join Australia, Czech Republic, Germany and Italy in the 2015 World Group.

Netherlands, Romania, Sweden and Switzerland all won their World Group II play-off ties, and will join the four World Group play-off losing nations, Argentina, Slovak Republic, Spain and USA, in 2015 World Group II.

The draw for the 2015 Fed Cup will be held at Roland Garros, Paris on Wednesday June 4, at 12:00 local time (10:00 GMT).

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Canada Wins Historic World Group Playoff Tie Against the Slovak Republic

Eugenie Bouchard

Eugenie Bouchard

By Charles David Mathieu-Poulin

(April 20, 2014) QUEBEC CITY – It wasn’t as easy as the final score looks to be, but Canada managed to sweep the first three singles rubbers in order to defeat higher ranked Slovak Republic On Sunday in the Fed Cup World Group playoff in Quebec City, Canada. After the two long three set battles of Saturday went Canada’s way, Eugenie Bouchard finished things off against Jana Cepelova not without saving a set point in the first set.

Indeed, it was Cepelova who was playing the best tennis early on, getting numerous break points in the first three Bouchard service games. While she wasn’t able to convert on her first five tries, she did do so on her sixth, getting a 5-3 lead with the first break of the set. But for the fourth time of this tie, she then failed to serve for a set, getting broken at love. It didn’t stop her from getting a set point in the next service game, but the Canadian erased it with a clear forehand winner. While both players held to force a tiebreak, it was then Bouchard who drew first blood, taking a quick 4-1 lead, then a 6-4 lead with an ace. But it was then her time to falter, as she double faulted on her first set point, then missed on the second. Somehow, she did manage to win the next two points and, once again, Canada came out on top of a set they probably shouldn’t have won.

The loss of this close first set seemed to affect Cepelova mentally, but also physically, as she seemed to get stiff in the neck area and was constantly rolling her shoulders to release tension. Her serve, which isn’t her biggest weapon to start with, suffered from it and became easy attackable for Bouchard, who then went on to win five straight games and what seemed like an insurmountable lead.  One game way from an historic win, Bouchard did start missing a touch more, while Cepelova started giving a last effort in order to get back. It did work, and after the Slovak won her serve for 5-1, then broke and held again, Genie saw her lead melt off to only one break. The crowd, which was getting quite excited at the prospect of a quick second set, started getting worried when Bouchard got down 15-30 in that 5-3 game. But strong serving and a few misses from Cepelova helped Genie sweep through the last three points, and send Canada into the World Group in 2015.

There was a lot of attention on Bouchard this weekend, as she has been rising up the ranks and is becoming quite the celebrity in her home country. But there was a small glitch in her armor, as she ruffled a lot of feathers with her Handshake-Gate on Friday at the draw ceremony. Indeed, she then refused to shake her opponent’s hand in front of the cameras, describing the photo-op as ‘’lame’’. Whether or not it affected her on court is tough to say, but her performance all weekend, and her overall body language throughout both matches, were off.

But Bouchard’s strong self-confidence is well-known, and she proved it again during this tie. Despite having issues finding her range with her groundstrokes and spirited opponents, she managed to raise her level when she needed to, a sign of greater things to come. She saved set points in both first sets of her matches, then closed them out in tiebreaks, and found ways to reel off series of games to close out the matches. Champions step it up on important points, and she proved again that she might be becoming one quicker than expected.

This win was remarkable from Canada, as they had been struggling to get out of the America Zone in the past years. Before this weekend, they had not reached the World Group since 1994, when the top 16 countries were present; it is therefore their first trip into the Elite 8. They have defeated Ukraine, Serbia and the Slovak Republic in the past 12 months, three countries with better Fed Cup résumés and will now be waiting to see who their first round opponent will be in 2015 out of Germany, the Czech Republic, Australia, Italy, Poland, Russia and France.

On a side note, the doubles match, a dead rubber, saw Slovakian team of Schmiedlova/Husarova beat Canadians Fichman/Dabrowski 6-4 5-7 11-9, leading to a final score of 3-1 for Canada.

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Canada fights to 2-0 lead in World Group Playoff Tie against the Slovak Republic

Eugenie Bouchard'

Eugenie Bouchard’

By Charles David Mathieu-Poulin

 

(April 19, 2014) QUEBEC CITY – It wasn’t easy, and it certainly wasn’t always pretty, but Canada managed to take a commanding 2-0 lead against the Slovakian squad on the first day of their World Group Playoff tie in Quebec City. While Aleksandra Wozniak had to throw everything but the kitchen sink at young Jana Cepelova in order to get the first point, Eugenie Bouchard probably made Brad Gilbert proud with a textbook example of ‘winning ugly’ in the second match against an inspired Kucova.

On paper, the Wozniak-Cepelova match was the most intriguing: the Canadian is a seasoned Fed Cup competitor with almost 50 matches under her belt, while Cepelova is an up-an-coming star who was still on a high after her dream Charleston run a few weeks ago when she beat Serena Williams en route to losing in the final to Andrea Petkovic. While the ranking gap between both highly favored the Slovakian, the Canadian is coming back from a series of serious injuries, went as high as 21st in the world and thus couldn’t be counted out.

The first set saw both players exchange a large number of breaks, but it was Cepelova who took the early lead, as Wozniak seemed tentative and struggling to find her usual aggressive game. On the other hand, the young Slovak was controlling points with her heavy forehand and kept Wozniak on her toes with a few of her infamous dropshots. While the Canadian started finding her form, it was too little too late as Cepelova broke at 5-4 despite Wozniak having two game points: it was the seventh break of the set.

The first half of the second set followed the same pattern, as Wozniak’s level dropped early and Cepelova kept the pressure on the Canadian’s serve. Down 6-4 5-2, the crowd didn’t have much hope for their home player, but better serving, lower unforced errors, better strategy (everything on the backhand) and a few tight games from Cepelova, who was two points away from the match at both 5-3 and 5-4, helped Wozniak level things off at 5-all. Playing more aggressively, being less tentative and serving much better, the Canadian won the last two games comfortably to force a third.

Oddly enough, the same scenario was repeated in the third set, as Cepelova, who was clearly the most consistent aggressor of the two, took another early lead, only to see Wozniak get back at 3-all. That’s when the match reached its peak, as both players started playing their best tennis and had numerous long, entertaining and varied rallies. Cepelova’s fighting spirit got her through the next two tight games, as she gave herself a second chance to serve out the match…only to get broken again. Serving to stay in the match, Wozniak unleashed a super down-the-line forehand winner to get out of a close game, which resulted in a standing ovation from the crowd of about 2000. Unphased, Cepelova got to a quick 40-0 lead in her next service game, only to see Wozniak reel off 5 straight points, then serve out the match quite easily for a hard-found 4-6  7-5 7-5 win. It was Wozniak’s 39th Fed Cup singles win, and probably the most dramatic of them all. After all she went through in the past few months, Wozniack seemed quite emotional in the on-court interview, as she held back tears of joy.

After such a dramatic match, the crowd expect a walk in the park for Canadian star Eugenie Bouchard, Canada’s top ranked player. While she was ranked more than 100 places higher than her opponent Kucova, it seemed like the roles were reversed at the start. Indeed, the Slovak came out firing with her two-handed shots on both sides, attacking early, hitting deep and flat, taking Genie off guard. The Canadian, on the other hand, looked flat and a bit snappy and struggled to keep the ball in play, getting rapidly in a 0-3 hole. While she managed to steady the ship and get back to 3-all, the Slovak kept her cool, followed her game plan and soon got to set point on Bouchard’s serve at 5-3. That’s when Bouchard decided to raise her level, saving a total of four set points in that game and then breaking to level things off at 5-5. After two holds, the set reached a tiebreak and despite coming from behind all set long, Bouchard managed to reel seven straight points by cleaning up her game and raising the aggression level.

After getting so close and failing to close out the set, one could have expected Kucova, ranked outside the top 100, to give up early in the second. But this would be underestimating the Slovak, who started playing lights out tennis and hitting numerous winners out of everywhere in the court, both as an attacker and when defending. On the other hand, Bouchard was average at best, and never managed to get a grip on a set that rapidly, and surprisingly, went the way of Slovak Republic on a score of 6-2.

The crowd was getting used to changes in momentum, as there were plenty all day, and the start of the third set saw yet another one. Bouchard, who seemed to find better form, took an early 2-0 lead, and even had chances for a double break for 3-0. But Kucova, who gained quite a few fans in the stands today as she showed a tremendous amount of heart, kept on fighting and getting to balls that seemed impossible to reach, and managed to hold for 1-2. That’s when her body started struggling, as she started to stretch between points and seemed to be out of breath. It didn’t take much more for Genie to smell blood and move her around, and while she was playing arguably better than Bouchard for most of the match, Kucova just couldn’t keep up with such a level after over two hours. The Canadian won the last four games, and the match, to give Canada a 2-0 lead.

This match was a great example of a superior player who is struggling against an opponent playing lights-out tennis, but who manages to find a way to win. And while she was clearly frustrated with her level after the match, the situation was well summarized by Sylvain Bureau, Canada’s captain: ”No matter how we did it, in the end, we finish the day leading 2-0. All we need tomorrow is to win one match and we will focus on that”.

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Charles David Mathieu-Poulin blogs for WtaQuebec www.wtaquebec.com, a website promoting local Quebec players. He is covering the Fed Cup in Quebec City for Tennis Panorama News. Follow him on twitter @earthstroke, follow his coverage on @TennnisNewsTPN.

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Fed Cup Results for April 19

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(April 19,2014) The ITF has announced the latest results for the 2014 Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group semifinals, and World Group and World Group II play-offs taking place on 19-20 April.

 

The two semifinal winners will contest the World Group Final on 8-9 November. The four winners of the World Group play-offs will qualify for the 2015 World Group, with the four losers contesting 2015 World Group II. The four winners of the World Group II play-offs will qualify for 2015 World Group II, with the four losers contesting their respective 2015 Zone Group I events. The draw for the 2015 Fed Cup will be held at Roland Garros, Paris on Wednesday, June 4,at 12:00 local time (10:00 GMT).

WORLD GROUP SEMIFINALS

 

CZECH REPUBLIC leads ITALY 2-0

Venue: CEZ Arena, Ostrava, CZE (hard – indoor)

 

Lucie Safarova (CZE) d. Sara Errani (ITA) 64 61

Petra Kvitova (CZE) d. Camila Giorgi (ITA) 64 62

Petra Kvitova (CZE) v Sara Errani (ITA)

Lucie Safarova (CZE) v Camila Giorgi (ITA)

Andrea Hlavackova/Klara Koukalova (CZE) v Karin Knapp/Roberta Vinci (ITA)

 

GERMANY leads AUSTRALIA 2-0

Venue: Queensland Tennis Centre, Brisbane, AUS (hard – outdoor)

 

Andrea Petkovic (GER) d. Samantha Stosur (AUS) 61 76(7)

Angelique Kerber (GER) d. Casey Dellacqua (AUS) 61 60

Samantha Stosur (AUS) v Angelique Kerber (GER)

Casey Dellacqua (AUS) v Andrea Petkovic (GER)

Ashleigh Barty/Casey Dellacqua (AUS) v Julia Goerges/Anna-Lena Groenefeld (GER)

 

WORLD GROUP PLAY-OFFS

 

RUSSIA leads ARGENTINA 2-0

Venue: Adler Arena, Sochi, RUS (clay – indoor)

 

Elena Vesnina (RUS) d. Paula Ormaechea (ARG) 63 63

Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) d. Maria Irigoyen (ARG) 75 61

Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) v Paula Ormaechea (ARG)

Elena Vesnina (RUS) v Maria Irigoyen (ARG)

Darya Kasatkina/Valeria Solovyeva (RUS) v Maria Irigoyen/Paula Ormaechea (ARG)

 

CANADA leads SLOVAK REPUBLIC 2-0

Venue: PEPS, Laval University, Quebec City, CAN (hard – indoor)

 

Aleksandra Wozniak (CAN) d. Jana Cepelova (SVK) 46 75 75

Eugenie Bouchard (CAN) d. Kristina Kucova (SVK) 76(0) 26 61

Eugenie Bouchard (CAN) v Jana Cepelova (SVK)

Aleksandra Wozniak (CAN) v Kristina Kucova (SVK)

Gabriela Dabrowski/Sharon Fichman (CAN) v Jana Cepelova/Janette Husarova (SVK)

 

USA level with FRANCE 1-1

Venue: Chaifetz Arena, St. Louis, MO, USA (hard – indoor)

 

Caroline Garcia (FRA) d. Sloane Stephens (USA) 62 62

Madison Keys (USA) d. Alize Cornet (FRA) 67(4) 76(4) 63

Sloane Stephens (USA) v Alize Cornet (FRA)

Madison Keys (USA) v Caroline Garcia (FRA)

Lauren Davis/Christina McHale (USA) v Claire Feuerstein/Virginie Razzano (FRA)

 

SPAIN level with POLAND 1-1

Venue: Olympic Stadium, Barcelona, ESP (clay – outdoor)

 

Agnieszka Radwanska (POL) d. Silvia Soler-Espinosa (ESP) 62 62

Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor (ESP) d. Urszula Radwanska (POL) 46 60 61

Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor (ESP) v Agnieszka Radwanska (POL)

Silvia Soler-Espinosa (ESP) v Urszula Radwanska (POL)

Estrella Cabeza-Candela/Anabel Medina Garrigues (ESP) v Paula Kania/Alicja Rosolska (POL)

 

WORLD GROUP II PLAY-OFFS

 

ROMANIA leads SERBIA 1-0

Venue: BNR Arenas, Bucharest, ROU (clay – outdoor)

 

Sorana Cirstea (ROU) d. Ana Ivanovic (SRB) 36 61 62

Simona Halep (ROU) v Bojana Jovanovski (SRB) 31 – play suspended due to rain

Simona Halep (ROU) v Ana Ivanovic (SRB)

Sorana Cirstea (ROU) v Bojana Jovanovski (SRB)

Irina-Camelia Begu/Monica Niculescu (ROU) v Jovana Jaksic/Nina Stojanovic (SRB)

 

NETHERLANDS level with JAPAN 1-1

Venue: Maaspoort Sports & Events, ’s-Hertogenbosch, NED (clay – indoor)

 

Kurumi Nara (JPN) d. Arantxa Rus (NED) 75 26 61

Kiki Bertens (NED) d. Misaki Doi (JPN) 60 76(3)

Kiki Bertens (NED) v Kurumi Nara (JPN)

Arantxa Rus (NED) v Misaki Doi (JPN)

Kiki Bertens/Michaella Krajicek (NED) v Shuko Aoyama/Risa Ozaki (JPN)

 

SWEDEN leads THAILAND 2-0

Venue: Sparbanken Lidkoping Arena, Lidkoping, SWE (hard – indoor)

 

Johanna Larsson (SWE) d. Noppawan Lertcheewakarn (THA) 61 63

Sofia Arvidsson (SWE) d. Luksika Kumkhum (THA) 64 62

Johanna Larsson (SWE) v Luksika Kumkhum (THA)

Sofia Arvidsson (SWE) v Noppawan Lertcheewakarn (THA)

Hilda Melander/Rebecca Peterson (SWE) v Tamarine Tanasugarn/Varatchaya Wongteanchai (THA)

 

SWITZERLAND leads BRAZIL 2-0

Venue: Clube de Tenis Catanduva, Catanduva, BRA (clay – outdoor)

 

Timea Bacsinszky (SUI) d. Teliana Pereira (BRA) 63 63

Belinda Bencic (SUI) d. Paula Cristina Goncalves (BRA) 63 63

Teliana Pereira (BRA) v Belinda Bencic (SUI)

Paula Cristina Goncalves (BRA) v Timea Bacsinszky (SUI)

Paula Cristina Goncalves/Teliana Pereira (BRA) v Viktorija Golubic/Amra Sadikovic (SUI)

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Canada Early Favorite in World Group Playoff Tie against the Slovak Republic

Eugenie Bouchard

Eugenie Bouchard

By Charles David Mathieu-Poulin

(April 18, 2014) QUEBEC CITY – Once again, it seems as though home soil advantage may pay off again for the Canadian Fed Cup squad, as they aim to reach the World Group for the first time in 20 years against Slovak Republic this weekend in Quebec City. While the best available players showed up on the Canadian side in Eugenie Bouchard, Aleksandra Wozniak, Fichman and Dabrowski, the visiting crew will be trying to defend their World Group spot without Dominika Cibulkova, Daniela Hantuchova and Rybarikova, its best three players.

Three Slovakian players are absent – Cibulkova who decided to play a hardcourt event in Kuala Lumpur this week instead and Rybarikova, who withdrew due to back injury right before heading on court in a 6-2, 6-0 win in Katowice last week actually just decided to skip the tie. Similarly to Canada’s last tie played against a depleted Serbian team last February, it thus seems like the crowd favorites might pull off what is, in theory, an upset.

Aleksandra Wozniak, Canada’s oldest player on the team at 26, will start things off on Saturday against Jana Cepelova, who is just coming back from the finals in Charleston, by far the biggest accomplishment of her young career. While the Slovakian might be on the rise, she has limited Fed Cup experience (only 5 matches played, compared to 37 matches in 33 ties for her opponent, a national record) and the fast surface at Laval University is far from the green har-tru of South Carolina. On the other hand, except for a spark of brilliance in Indian Wells, Wozniak has been struggling since coming back from injury last year, and while a former number 21 in the world, she has yet to prove that she is completely back to her old form. This match is probably the most intriguing of the weekend and a must-win for the Slovak Republic: a win by Wozniak could possibly already seal the deal for Canada right from the get-go.

While Wozniak has been quite popular in her native province of Quebec over the years, it is nothing compared to the attention young Eugenie Bouchard has received over the past few months. Named WTA’s Best Newcomer in 2013 and a semi-finalist at the 2014 Australian Open, she is now in the top 20 and arguably one of the most marketable players out on the tour right now. While most players seem to struggle dealing with pressure, it seems like Genie thrives for it: being the number 1 player of the team suits her well, and she should prove it in the second match of the tie against relatively unknown Kristina Kucova. In a surprising move, Slovakian Captain Matek Liptak has indeed preferred Kucova, ranked 137th, to up-an-coming Schmiedlova (68th). While the reasons behind this choice are unknown (injuries, playing styles, favorite surfaces), Genie will be the strong favorite heading into this match.

In the reverse singles on Sunday, Bouchard should face Cepelova first, while Kucova is scheduled to face Wozniak. Depending on Kucova’s performance against Bouchard, don’t be surprised if Schmiedlova is actually sent on court for that one. In the deciding doubles match, Canadians Fichman and Dabrowski should face Cepelova and Husarova, who at 40 is by far the veteran of both teams and was remarkably part of the last Slovakian team to win the Fed Cup title in 2002. While Fichman and Dabrowki are Canada’s highest ranked doubles players, Canadian captain Sylvain Bruneau could well decide to throw Bouchard in the mix for the doubles match with Fichman, like he did last minute last year against Ukraine. A bold move that worked out well then, but that left Dabrowski, understandably, quite frustrated. Let’s just hope she doesn’t hold a grudge.

 

Match Schedule – Canada vs Slovak Republic World Group Playoff Tie

PEPS at Laval University, Quebec City

 

Saturday, April 19th (3pm ET).

Aleksandra Wozniak (CAN) vs. Jana Cepelova (SVK)

Eugenie Bouchard (CAN) vs. Kristina Kucova (SVK)

 

Sunday, April 20th (1pm ET).

Eugenie Bouchard (CAN) vs Jana Cepelova (SVK)

Aleksandra Wozniak (CAN) vs Kristina Kucova (SVK)

Gabriela Dabrowski/Sharon Fichman (CAN) vs Jana Cepelova/Janetta Husarova (SVK)

Charles David Mathieu-Poulin blogs for WtaQuebec www.wtaquebec.com, a website promoting local Quebec players. He is covering the Fed Cup in Quebec City for Tennis Panorama News. Follow him on twitter @earthstroke, follow his coverage on @TennnisNewsTPN.

Canada Early Favorite in World Group Playoff Tie against the Slovak Republic

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Draws Announced for Fed Cup World Group Semifinals and Play-off Ties

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(April 18, 2014) The ITF has announced the draws for the 2014 Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group semifinals, and World Group and World Group II play-offs taking place on 19-20 April.

 

The two semifinal winners will contest the World Group Final on 8-9 November. The four winners of the World Group play-offs will qualify for the 2015 World Group, with the four losers contesting 2015 World Group II. The four winners of the World Group II play-offs will qualify for 2015 World Group II, with the four losers contesting their respective 2015 Zone Group I events. The draw for the 2015 Fed Cup will be held at Roland Garros, Paris on Wednesday 4 June at 12:00 local time (10:00 GMT).

 

Live scoring for the World Group semifinals and play-off ties will be available on the official Fed Cup website throughout the weekend. In addition, the English and Spanish websites will feature a live blog, reports, photographs, audio interviews, podcasts and live streaming. There will also be a social media hub where fans can interact on www.fedcup.com/showyourcolours.

 

Follow all the action on www.fedcup.com, www.fedcup.com/es, www.twitter.com/fedcup, www.facebook.com/FedCup and www.fedcup.tv.

Fed Cup by BNP Paribas is the World Cup of Tennis. It is the largest annual international team competition in women’s sport, with 95 nations taking part in 2014. The event celebrated its 50th birthday in 2013 in the ITF’s centenary year. The title sponsor is BNP Paribas, the Official Bank of Fed Cup. Adecco (Official HR Sponsor) is an international sponsor, and Wilson Sporting Goods (Official Ball) is an international partner.

WORLD GROUP SEMIFINALS

 

CZECH REPUBLIC v ITALY

Venue: CEZ Arena, Ostrava, CZE (hard – indoor)

 

Lucie Safarova (CZE) v Sara Errani (ITA)

Petra Kvitova (CZE) v Camila Giorgi (ITA)

Petra Kvitova (CZE) v Sara Errani (ITA)

Lucie Safarova (CZE) v Camila Giorgi (ITA)

Andrea Hlavackova/Klara Koukalova (CZE) v Karin Knapp/Roberta Vinci (ITA)

 

AUSTRALIA v GERMANY

Venue: Queensland Tennis Centre, Brisbane, AUS (hard – outdoor)

 

Samantha Stosur (AUS) v Andrea Petkovic (GER)

Casey Dellacqua (AUS) v Angelique Kerber (GER)

Samantha Stosur (AUS) v Angelique Kerber (GER)

Casey Dellacqua (AUS) v Andrea Petkovic (GER)

Ashleigh Barty/Casey Dellacqua (AUS) v Julia Goerges/Anna-Lena Groenefeld (GER)

 

WORLD GROUP PLAY-OFFS

 

RUSSIA v ARGENTINA

Venue: Adler Arena, Sochi, RUS (clay – indoor)

 

Elena Vesnina (RUS) v Paula Ormaechea (ARG)

Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) v Maria Irigoyen (ARG)

Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) v Paula Ormaechea (ARG)

Elena Vesnina (RUS) v Maria Irigoyen (ARG)

Darya Kasatkina/Valeria Solovyeva (RUS) v Maria Irigoyen/Paula Ormaechea (ARG)

 

CANADA v SLOVAK REPUBLIC

Venue: PEPS, Laval University, Quebec City, CAN (hard – indoor)

 

Aleksandra Wozniak (CAN) v Jana Cepelova (SVK)

Eugenie Bouchard (CAN) v Kristina Kucova (SVK)

Eugenie Bouchard (CAN) v Jana Cepelova (SVK)

Aleksandra Wozniak (CAN) v Kristina Kucova (SVK)

Gabriela Dabrowski/Sharon Fichman (CAN) v Jana Cepelova/Janette Husarova (SVK)

 

USA v FRANCE

Venue: Chaifetz Arena, St. Louis, MO, USA (hard – indoor)

 

Sloane Stephens (USA) v Caroline Garcia (FRA)

Madison Keys (USA) v Alize Cornet (FRA)

Sloane Stephens (USA) v Alize Cornet (FRA)

Madison Keys (USA) v Caroline Garcia (FRA)

Lauren Davis/Christina McHale (USA) v Claire Feuerstein/Virginie Razzano (FRA)

 

SPAIN v POLAND

Venue: Olympic Stadium, Barcelona, ESP (clay – outdoor)

 

Silvia Soler-Espinosa (ESP) v Agnieszka Radwanska (POL)

Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor (ESP) v Urszula Radwanska (POL)

Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor (ESP) v Agnieszka Radwanska (POL)

Silvia Soler-Espinosa (ESP) v Urszula Radwanska (POL)

Estrella Cabeza-Candela/Anabel Medina Garrigues (ESP) v Paula Kania/Alicja Rosolska (POL)

 

WORLD GROUP II PLAY-OFFS

 

ROMANIA v SERBIA

Venue: BNR Arenas, Bucharest, ROU (clay – outdoor)

 

Sorana Cirstea (ROU) v Ana Ivanovic (SRB)

Simona Halep (ROU) v Bojana Jovanovski (SRB)

Simona Halep (ROU) v Ana Ivanovic (SRB)

Sorana Cirstea (ROU) v Bojana Jovanovski (SRB)

Irina-Camelia Begu/Monica Niculescu (ROU) v Jovana Jaksic/Nina Stojanovic (SRB)

 

NETHERLANDS v JAPAN

Venue: Maaspoort Sports & Events, ’s-Hertogenbosch, NED (clay – indoor)

 

Arantxa Rus (NED) v Kurumi Nara (JPN)

Kiki Bertens (NED) v Misaki Doi (JPN)

Kiki Bertens (NED) v Kurumi Nara (JPN)

Arantxa Rus (NED) v Misaki Doi (JPN)

Kiki Bertens/Michaella Krajicek (NED) v Shuko Aoyama/Risa Ozaki (JPN)

 

SWEDEN v THAILAND

Venue: Sparbanken Lidkoping Arena, Lidkoping, SWE (hard – indoor)

 

Johanna Larsson (SWE) v Noppawan Lertcheewakarn (THA)

Sofia Arvidsson (SWE) v Luksika Kumkhum (THA)

Johanna Larsson (SWE) v Luksika Kumkhum (THA)

Sofia Arvidsson (SWE) v Noppawan Lertcheewakarn (THA)

Hilda Melander/Rebecca Peterson (SWE) v Tamarine Tanasugarn/Varatchaya Wongteanchai (THA)

 

BRAZIL v SWITZERLAND

Venue: Clube de Tenis Catanduva, Catanduva, BRA (clay – outdoor)

 

Teliana Pereira (BRA) v Timea Bacsinszky (SUI)

Paula Cristina Goncalves (BRA) v Belinda Bencic (SUI)

Teliana Pereira (BRA) v Belinda Bencic (SUI)

Paula Cristina Goncalves (BRA) v Timea Bacsinszky (SUI)

Paula Cristina Goncalves/Teliana Pereira (BRA) v Viktorija Golubic/Amra Sadikovic (SUI)

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U.S. Fed Cup Coverage on Tennis Channel this Weekend

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LOS ANGELES, April18, 2014 Tennis Channel will provide exclusive live coverage of the U.S. Fed Cup team’s playoff competition against France in St. Louis this weekend, with live world-whiparound telecasts on Center Court Saturday, April 19, beginning at 4:30 p.m., and Sunday, April 20 ET, beginning at 2 p.m. ET. Similar to the setup used at major events like the US Open, French Open and Wimbledon, Center Court utilizes a central-desk format and seamless coverage of matches playing simultaneously on multiple courts. The United States must defeat France to qualify for the 2015 Fed Cup tournament. Former Australian Open semifinalist (2013) Sloane Stephens will join Madison Keys, Varvara Lepchenko and Christina McHale as they fight for a spot in next year’s Fed Cup tournament after losing their first-round match to Italy in February.

 

In addition to televising the United States-FranceFed Cup playoff this weekend, Tennis Channel will cover the 2015 Fed Cup semifinals live on Center Court with Italy-Czech Republic play, in Ostrava, Czech Republic, beginning at 7 a.m. ET, and Germany-Australia competition in Brisbane, Australia, beginning at 10:45 p.m. ET.

 

Tennis Channel will also feature the men’s Monte Carlo tournament and the women’s Kuala Lumpur tournament this weekend, which feature such stars as Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Stanislas Wawrinka and Dominika Cibulkova.

 

Coverage on Center Court is as follows (all time ET):

Saturday, April  19:

7a.m. – Live Singles #1 Italy v. Czech Republic 

7:30 a.m. – Live ATP Monte Carlo

4:30 p.m. –Live Singles #1 USA v. France

6:30 p.m. – Live Singles #2 USA v. France

10:45 p.m. – Live Singles #3 Germany v. Australia 

1a.m. – Live Singles #4 Germany v. Australia 

3a.m. – Live Doubles Germany v. Australia 

 

Sunday, April 20:

6a.m. – Live Singles Italy v. Czech Republic / WTA Kuala Lumpur

6:30a.m. – Live Doubles ATP Monte Carlo

9a.m. – Live Singles ATP Monte Carlo

2 p.m. – Live Singles #3 USA v. France

4p.m. – Live Singles #4 USA v. France

6p.m. – Live Doubles USA v. France

 

The United States and France have faced each other 11 times in Fed Cup play, with the United States winning all but one of those meetings. However, France captured its sole victory against the United States in 2003in the final.The American squad must defeat France in order to compete in the 2015 Fed Cup competition. The United States leads all nations with 17 Fed Cup championships, the most recent in 2000.

 

Retired tennis star Mary Joe Fernandez, a member of the winning U.S. Fed Cup team in 1996, will lead the United States Fed Cup team for her sixth year as captain. Stephens reached her first seminal at a Grand Slam last year when she defeated Serena Williams in the quarterfinals at the Australian Open. Keys received her first victory over a top-ten player last year at the Madrid Open when she defeated Li Na in the first round before falling to Angelique Kerber. Lepchenko had a breakout season last year when she advanced the fourth round at the French Open and the third rounds at both Wimbledon and the US Open. McHale earned praise for her impressive performance at the 2013 US Open in the third round before falling to former World No. 1 Ana Ivanovic.

 

If France wins this weekend it will qualify for a chance to play for the 2015 Fed Cup.  France’s team is captained by Amelie Mauresmo and features Alize Cornet, Caroline Garcia, Virginie Razzano and Claire Feuerstein.

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Fed Cup Announces Team Nominations for World Group semifinals, and World Group and World Group II Play-offs

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(April 9, 2014) The ITF has announced the official team nominations for the 2014 Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group semifinals, and World Group and World Group II play-offs taking place on April 19-20.

The two semifinal winners will contest the World Group Final on November 8-9. The four winners of the World Group play-offs will qualify for the 2015 World Group, with the four losers contesting 2015 World Group II. The four winners of the World Group II play-offs will qualify for 2015 World Group II, with the four losers contesting their respective 2015 Zone Group I event.

WORLD GROUP SEMIFINALS

CZECH REPUBLIC v ITALY

Venue: CEZ Arena, Ostrava, CZE (hard – indoor)

Czech Republic

Petra Kvitova

Lucie Safarova

Klara Koukalova

Andrea Hlavackova

Captain: Petr Pala

Italy

Sara Errani

Roberta Vinci

Karin Knapp

Camila Giorgi

Captain: Corrado Barazzutti

AUSTRALIA v GERMANY

Venue: Queensland Tennis Centre, Brisbane, AUS (hard – outdoor)

Australia

Samantha Stosur

Casey Dellacqua

Ashleigh Barty

Storm Sanders

Captain: Alicia Molik

Germany

Angelique Kerber

Andrea Petkovic

Julia Goerges

Anna-Lena Groenefeld

Captain: Barbara Rittner

WORLD GROUP PLAY-OFFS

RUSSIA v ARGENTINA

Venue: Adler Arena, Sochi, RUS

Russia

Ekaterina Makarova

Elena Vesnina

Valeria Solovyeva

Darya Kasatkina

Captain: Anastasia Myskina

Argentina

Paula Ormaechea

Maria Irigoyen

Victoria Bosio

Nadia Podoroska

Captain: Maria-Jose Gaidano

CANADA v SLOVAK REPUBLIC

Venue: PEPS, Laval University, Quebec City, CAN

Canada

Eugenie Bouchard

Sharon Fichman

Aleksandra Wozniak

Gabriela Dabrowski

Captain: Sylvain Bruneau

Slovak Republic

Magdalena Rybarikova

Jana Cepelova

Anna Karolina Schmiedlova

Michaela Honcova

Captain: Matej Liptak

USA v FRANCE

Venue: Chaifetz Arena, St. Louis, MO, USA

USA

Sloane Stephens

Madison Keys

Varvara Lepchenko

Christina McHale

Captain: Mary Joe Fernandez

France

Alize Cornet

Caroline Garcia

Virginie Razzano

Kristina Mladenovic

Captain: Amelie Mauresmo

SPAIN v POLAND

Venue: Olympic Stadium, Barcelona, ESP

Spain

Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor

Estrella Cabeza-Candela

Silvia Soler-Espinosa

Anabel Medina Garrigues

Captain: Conchita Martinez

Poland

Agnieszka Radwanska

Urzula Radwanska

Paula Kania

Alicja Rosolska

Captain: Tomasz Wiktorowski

WORLD GROUP II PLAY-OFFS

ROMANIA v SERBIA

Venue: BNR Arenas, Bucharest, ROU

Romania

Simona Halep

Sorana Cirstea

Monica Niculescu

Irina-Camelia Begu

Captain: Alina Cercel-Tecsor

Serbia

Ana Ivanovic

Bojana Jovanovski

Jovana Jaksic

Nina Stojanovic

Captain: Dejan Vranes

NETHERLANDS v JAPAN

Venue: Maaspoort Sports & Events, ’s-Hertogenbosch, NED

Netherlands

Kiki Bertens

Arantxa Rus

Richel Hogenkamp

Michaella Krajicek

Captain: Paul Haarhuis

Japan

Kurumi Nara

Misaki Doi

Risa Ozaki

Shuko Aoyama

Captain: Yuka Kaneko

SWEDEN v THAILAND

Venue: Sparbanken Lidkoping Arena, Lidkoping, SWE

Sweden

Johanna Larsson

Sofia Arvidsson

Rebecca Peterson

Hilda Melander

Captain: Lars-Anders Wahlgren

Thailand

Luksika Kumkhum

Noppawan Lertcheewakarn

Tamarine Tanasugarn

Varatchaya Wongteanchai

Captain: Priyakarn Salivorraroj

BRAZIL v SWITZERLAND

Venue: Clube de Tenis Catanduva, Catanduva, BRA

Brazil

Teliana Pereira

Laura Pigossi

Gabriela Ce

Paula Cristina Goncalves

Captain: Carla Tiene

Switzerland

Belinda Bencic

Viktorija Golubic

Timea Bacsinszky

Amra Sadikovic

Captain: Heinz Guenthardt

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