MAUI, HI, USA
After dominating Germany 4-0 in the Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group first round tie in Maui, Hawaii, Team USA – winner of 17 Fed Cup titles – can now look ahead April's last four clash with Czech Republic, who have won the trophy a mere 10 times.
But the semifinals, which will be played the weekend of 22-23 April, will be another opportunity for the USA to end their Fed Cup title drought of 17 years – while the Czechs have won in five of the last six years. The last time the Americans won the Fed Cup competition was in 2000 when they defeated Spain 5-0 for the trophy.
This year also marks the first time since 2014 the USA is competing in the World Group – they were relegated to World Group II action the past two years.
The task ahead for Team USA is to reach their first final since 2010 when Italy prevailed 3-1 in San Diego, California. But to meet that goal the USA will have to upend the Fed Cup tour de force that the Czechs have become in recent years.
The Czechs earned their semifinal spot with a 3-2 win over Spain at home this weekend, and are aiming to win a fourth consecutive title. If that isn’t impressive enough, their only loss in the past six years came in 2013, a year where Italy defeated Russia 4-0 in the Final.
"Obviously, Czech Republic is a very strong, tough team," said USA captain Kathy Rinaldi, who made her Fed Cup captain debut at this tie. "They have many, many great players.