I almost freaked the hell out when I saw that Tennis Channel was broadcasting only two days of Fed Cup Finals action, live from sunny San Diego. Then I remembered that unlike Davis Cup, Fed Cup is on a frenetic two day schedule. So Tennis Channel is spared my feminazi tirade!
How about a poll instead?
I’m a Davis Cup dork, so I should prefer the three day plan, with doubles in the middle. I do love how doubles is often the turning point or decider in DC competition. But practically, I like to be able to watch the tournament over the weekend. And I’m sure ticket buyers appreciate knowing they’ll see “live” rubbers on both days. So I’m abstaining from this vote!
Team USA: Bethanie Mattek Sands, Melanie Oudin, Liezel Huber, and Coco Vandewegh, Captain Mary Joe Fernandez (I’m missing Vania King on this squad. . .)
Team ITALIA: Flavia Pennetta, Francesca Schiavone, Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci, Captain Corrado Barazzutti
Venue: San Diego Sports Arena, indoor hardcourt
This should be an entertaining replay of last year’s final. I give an edge to the defending champs, with Schiavone and Pennetta continuing to show strong form a year after their career changing team effort. Team USA is hoping that these two stars are tired after playing in Doha last week. (Digression: One of my favorite stories of this past year was Schiavone’s surprise French Open title – possible only because of the confidence and inspiration she gained by winning the 2009 Fed Cup.)
But the Williams-less American women aren’t a lost cause. They’re comfortable underdogs and have the home (hard) court advantage in San Diego this time around. Huber and Sands did make it to the Wimbledon semis as a team this season and Oudin can play well under pressure. 2008 US Open junior champ, Coco Vandeweghe, has had a successful turn as a grown-up this season. She made it to the quarters this summer at the Mercury Insurance Open in San Diego and won her two first pro-level titles on the USTA Pro Circuit this spring.
Better watch and see what happens!
TENNIS TV SCHEDULE: 2010 FED CUP FINAL USA VS. ITALY
Saturday, November 6:
4:00 p.m. : Fed Cup Final Singles #1 – LIVE
6:00 p.m. – Fed Cup Final Singles #2 – LIVE
Sunday, November 7:
4:00 p.m. – Fed Cup Final Singles #3 – LIVE
6:00 p.m. – Fed Cup Final Singles #4 – LIVE
8:00 p.m. – Fed Cup Final Doubles – LIVE