There is nothing like an Olympic year to produce interesting Fed Cups ties, as many players must participate in order to maintain their Olympic eligibility.
The most intriguing World Group tie is taking place in Stuttgart, where Germany lost two close matches to the defending champs from the Czech Republic. The Germans have a strong team, but both Sabine Lisicki and Julia Goerges left the court in tears and they were unable to get over the line at home. The competent lefty Iveta Benesova upended Lisicki 2-6 6-4 6-2, while Petra Kvitova overcame Goerges 3-6 6-3 10-8. The tie is not over yet but it will take rapid emotional turnaround for the Germans to get it done.
There was a bit of craziness in Biella, Italy, where Lesia Tsurenko of Ukraine stunned Francesca Schiavone 6-1 6-2. The tie is now locked at 1-1 as Sara Errani bested Kateryna Bondarenko. One would have to think that Schiavone is either ill or hurt and that Roberta Vinci might get the call for Sunday singles.
As expected, Maria Sharapova and Svetlana Kuznetsova easily won matches for Russia against Spain. Belgium and Serbia split matches with Jelena Jankovic besting Kirsten Flipkens 7-5, 7-5 and Yanina Wickmayer overcoming Bojana Jovanovski 6-4, 6-4. That