India qualify for play-off tie in Fed Cup | sports | Hindustan Times
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India qualify for play-off tie in Fed Cup

sports Updated: Feb 03, 2012 23:32 IST

Agencies
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India on Friday earned the opportunity to get promotion to Asia/Oceania Group I of the Fed Cup after qualifying for the play-off tie, following a 2-1 win over Phillipines in the last round-robin tie at Shenzhen, China.

India ended on top in Pool B and will now fight it out with Pool A winner Hong Kong on Saturday for a place in Group I in next year's competition.

India have won all the ties so far but lost a match on Thursday when Prerna Bhambri was undone 6-3 4-6 2-6 by Anna Clarice Patrimonio.

Earlier, Rutuja Bhonsle had won the round one 6-2 6-3 against Tamitha Nguyen to give India a 1-0 lead.

Experienced pair of Sania Mirza and Isha Lakhani then routed Patrimonio and Nguyen 6-0 6-1 in the deciding third round to ensure India end on top of the table.

Earlier, India had blanked Iran Oman and Turkmenistan with an identiacla 3-0 margin in pool rubbers.

Sharapova to lead
Three-time Grand Slam champion Maria Sharapova will play Silvia Soler-Espinosa in the opening singles match on Saturday when Russia hosts Spain in the first round of the Fed Cup.

Two-time Grand Slam champion Svetlana Kuznetsova will face Carla Suarez Navarro in the second match.

In Sunday's reverse singles, Sharapova will play Suarez Navarro, while Kuznetsova will take on Soler-Espinosa.