Champions Italy off to flying start; take 2-0 lead

Champions Italy off to flying start; take 2-0 lead

Italy's top player Francesca Schiavone gave the visitors a flying start by brushing aside untried American teenager Coco Vandeweghe 6-2, 6-4 in one hour 23 minutes on the indoor hardcourt surface at the San Diego Sports Arena.

Flavia Pennetta then held off a first-set fightback by American number one Bethanie Mattek-Sands, saving one set point, before winning a tense match 7-6, 6-2.  No team has come from 0-2 behind to win the Fed Cup, and the Italians are poised to complete another whitewash against the Americans, having swept them 4-0 in last year's final.

In Sunday's reverse singles, Mattek-Sands was set to face Schiavone while Vandeweghe meets Pennetta before Americans Liezel Huber and Melanie Oudin play Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci in the concluding doubles.

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