Melanie Oudin clinched a first-round win for the U.S. Fed Cup team on Sunday by winning her second singles match of the weekend, defeating France’s Julie Coin 7-6(3), 6-4 to put the U.S. in the semis.
Coin replaced Alize Cornet, who had lost to the U.S.’s Bethanie Mattek-Sands on Saturday, and was reported to be struggling with her nerves. Cornet is 0-6 career in Fed Cup singles matches.
In the semifinals the U.S. will host Russia in April after the Russians defeated Serbia 3-2. In the deciding doubles match Svetlana Kuznetsova and Alisa Kleybanova defeated Jelena Jankovic and Ana Ivanovic 6-1, 6-4 to advance.
“Overall our team win and this is what counts,” Kuznetsova said.
In the other half of the draw, Italy advanced into the semis with a 3-1 win over the Ukraine when Fed Cup stalwarts Flavia Pennetta and Francesca Schiavone subdued the Bondarenko sisters in the Sunday singles. Pennetta opened with a 7-5, 7-6(3) win over Alona Bondarenko, then Schiavone clinched it for Italy by defeating Kateryn Bondarenko 2-6, 6-1, 6-1.
Italy will face the Czech Republic in the semifinals after the Czechs edged Germany 3-2. Czech Fed Cup rookie Lucie Hradecka won her Sunday singles to even the tie, then teamed with Kveta Peschke to beat Anna-Lena Groenefeld and Tatjana Malek to clinch the win.
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