US loses to Italy in Fed Cup

Associated Press  |  Last updated February 08, 2013
The United States was eliminated in the first round of the Fed Cup, losing to Italy 3-2 Sunday when Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci defeated Varvara Lepchenko and Liezel Huber in the decisive doubles match. Errani and Vinci, the top-ranked doubles team, won 6-2, 6-2 against an understrength American team. The US was without Serena and Venus Williams and Sloane Stephens because of injuries. The US led 2-1 after Lepchenko beat Errani 7-5, 6-2 in Sunday's first reverse singles. But Vinci stopped Jamie Hampton 6-2, 4-6, 6-1 to set up the crucial doubles in the best-of-five World Group series. Italy will host defending champion Czech Republic in the semifinals, a rematch of last year's semifinal. The Czech Republic defeated Australia. In the other semifinal, it's Slovakia at Russia
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