Serbia face Fed Cup champs Russia in 2010 opener
Originally published on: 26/02/10 11:34
Fed Cup World Group debutants Serbia face the toughest possible assignment in their first tie, having been drawn against defending champions Russia.
Having helped secure promotion to join the elite group of women’s tennis nations in 2008, former world No.1s Ana Ivanovic and Jelena Jankovic admitted that the tie, to be played in February next year, was daunting – but were both looking forward to the challenge, particularly as the tie will be staged in the Serbian capital, Belgrade.
“Russia is a strong team with a lot of top players, but both Ana and I beat each of them” – Jankovic
“Russia is the most difficult possible draw we could have gotten, but at least we are lucky to play them at home,” world No.5 Jankovic said. “Russia is a strong team with a lot of top players, but both Ana and I played with each of them and beat each of them.”
For Ivanovic, the prospect of playing such a glamourous tie in her hometown is all the motivation she will need.
“This is going to be a very exciting match-up. We definitely did not have an easy draw, but it certainly will be extremely interesting,” said last year’s French Open champion. “We’ll be playing in front of lots of our supporters, and I’m sure that the atmosphere will be exceptional.”
Elsewhere, 17-time champions and 2009 finalists USA will face France in their 2010 opener. Italy, who face the US this November for the 2009 title, will start their 2010 campaign at home against Ukraine, while the Czech Republic host Germany.
Draw for the 2010 Fed Cup World Groups (seeds in bold, home team first):
Italy vs Ukraine
Czech Republic vs Germany
Serbia vs Russia
France vs USA
World Group II
Spain vs Australia
Belgium vs Poland
Estonia vs Argentina
Slovakia vs China
World Group and World Group II first round ties take place on Feb 6-7, 2010.