King speaks on Fed Cup team

Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 26, 2003

Suffolk News-Herald

Too bad the U.S. Fed Cup tennis team only has four members. It already reads like a &uot;Who’s Who&uot; in American women’s tennis.

Monica Seles, Meghann Shaughnessy and Lisa Raymond have been selected to join Venus Williams to face Italy in the Fed Cup quarterfinals against Italy, July 19-20 in Washington, D.C., team captain Billie Jean King announced in a conference call on Thursday morning.

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&uot;I’m really excited about these three players,&uot; King said. &uot;We’re particularly excited that the Washington tennis and education people are behind this. We hope to make a huge impact on the Washington, D.C. community.&uot;

Seles, ranked No. 18 in the world, has been a member of 11 of the 13 U.S. Fed Cup teams named since her 1996 debut against Japan. She has not competed since Roland Garros, where she lost in the first round to eventual-semifinalist Nadia Petrova. Seles, whose career Fed Cup record is 17-2 (15-2 in singles), withdrew from Wimbledon because of a left foot injury that has troubled her all year.

&uot;She’s already starting to hit again,&uot; King said. &uot;If there’s a problem, she’ll call me. It’s great to know that we have such depth in American womens’ tennis.&uot;

Shaughnessy and Raymond will most likley form the doubles pairing. In their only previous outing for the United States, they defeated Israel’s Tzipora Obziler and Hila Rosen in last year’s Fed Cup World Group playoffs.

The Italian team has not been named. The U.S. has not lost to Italy in eight previous Fed Cup matches.

&uot;Head to head, I think we’re in good shape,&uot; King said. &uot;Quite frankly, I’ll be disappointed if we don’t win big.&uot;