USA to host Czechs at Tampa Bay
Three-time defending champion Czech Republic will play host United States on an outdoor clay court near Tampa, Florida, in next month's Fed Cup semifinals, the US Tennis Association announced.
The April 22-23 tie will be staged at the Saddlebrook Resort north of Tampa with the winner advancing to November's final against either Switzerland or Belarus in the women's team competition.
The Americans have won the trophy a record 17 times, but not since 2000, while the Czechs have captured five of the past six Fed Cup titles, including a 3-2 finals triumph last year at France.
"Saddlebrook is an iconic tennis venue and we are very pleased that Fed Cup will be showcased here for the first time," USTA president Katrina Adams said. "It will be a perfect site for our Fed Cup matchup against the Czech Republic."
Karolina Pliskova, last year's US Open runner-up, and Lucie Safarova, ranked second in the world in doubles, are likely to play for the Czechs.
The US women own a 9-2 edge over the Czechs in their Fed Cup rivalry, including a 3-2 victory in their most recent matchup in the 2009 semifinals. The Czechs last beat the Americans in 1985.