LOS ANGELES, Feb. 9, 2017 -Tennis Channel will provide exclusive live coverage of the U.S. Fed Cup team’s first-round competition against Germany in Maui, Hawaii, this weekend, with telecasts Saturday, Feb. 11, beginning at 4 p.m. ET, and Sunday, Feb. 12, beginning at 3 p.m. ET. Australian Open doubles champion and World No. 1 doubles player Bethanie Mattek-Sands will lead singles semifinalist Coco Vandeweghe, Alison Riske and Shelby Rogers as they begin their quest for the 2017 Fed Cup title.
The battle between the United States and Germany will consist of two singles matches Saturday, and two singles matches and a doubles match Sunday. The winner of the first-round matchup will advance to the semifinals in April to face either the Czech Republic or Spain.
In addition to covering the United States-Germany matchup this weekend, Tennis Channel and Tennis Channel Plus will show two other first-round Fed Cup competitions. Beginning Saturday, Feb. 11, viewers can watch three-time defending Fed Cup champions Czech Republic play Spain in Ostrava, Czech Republic, and 2016 Fed Cup finalist France take on Switzerland in Geneva. Viewers can also catch both of these on-demand on the network’s digital subscription service, Tennis Channel Plus. The platform (www.tennischanneleverywhere.com) is available to everyone in the United States regardless of whether they subscribe to Tennis Channel. Other stars set to play Fed Cup this weekend include the Czech Republic’s Karolina Pliskova, Spain’s Garbine Muguruza, France’s Alize Cornet and Switzerland’s Timea Bacsinszky.
Steve Weissman (@Steve_Weissman) will join Hall of Famer and former U.S. Fed Cup player Lindsay Davenport (@LDavenport76) in Maui to call the United States-Germany matches for Tennis Channel. As a player, Davenport contributed to U.S. Fed Cup team championships in 1996, 1999 and 2000. The network’s on-air team will also include former player and renowned sportscaster Mary Carillo, Hall of Famer and former U.S. Fed Cup player Tracy Austin (@thetracyaustin), and former U.S. Davis Cup players Leif Shiras (@LShirock) and Paul Annacone (@Paul_Annacone). During Austin’s U.S. Fed Cup career she contributed to three championships (1978-1980).
Tennis Channel’s live Fed Cup coverageis as follows (all time ET):
Saturday, Feb. 11:
7:30 a.m. -Singles Czech Republic v. Spain (Tennis Channel Plus)
8a.m. -Singles France v. Switzerland (Tennis Channel Plus)
4p.m. -Singles USA v. Germany
Sunday, Feb. 12:
7a.m. -Singles, Doubles Czech Republic v. Spain (Tennis Channel Plus)
Singles, Doubles France v. Switzerland (on Tennis Channel and Tennis Channel Plus)
3p.m. -Singles, Doubles USA v. Germany
The United States and Germany have met 13 times in Fed Cup play, with the United States holding an 8-5 advantage. However, Germany won the last meeting 5-0 in Stuttgart, Germany, in 2011. The Americans last defeated Germany in 2008, in La Jolla, Calif. The United States leads all nations with 17 Fed Cup championships, the most recent in 2000.
The U.S. Fed Cup team is captained this year by retired American tennis star, Kathy Rinaldi who, as a player, reached the semifinals at Wimbledon in 1985. She also holds three WTA singles titles and achieved a career-high ranking of World No. 7 in 1986. Mattek-Sands, World No. 1 doubles player, leads the Americans into this weekend after winning the Australian Open women’s doubles title with Lucie Safarova. Vandeweghe also had an impressive run at last month’s Australian Open, with wins over reigning champion and then-World No. 1 Angelique Kerber and 2016 French Open champion Muguruza en route to the semifinals. Riske reached her fifth career WTA singles final in January at the Shenzhen Open in China and the third round at the Australian Open. Fed Cup newcomer Rogers achieved a career-high ranking after advancing to the quarterfinals at the WTA event in Hobart, Australia, prior to defeating Simona Halep in the first round of the Australian Open.
Germany has won the Fed Cup title on two occasions: 1987 and 1992. The team is captained by Barbara Rittnerand features Laura Siegemund, Andrea Petkovic, Julia Goerges and Carina Witthoeft.