USA claim spot in Fed Cup semi-finals

Lead by Venus Williams, USA beat the Netherlands on Sunday in the quarter-finals of the Fed Cup to become one of four remaining teams in the competition.

Williams clinched the Fed Cup first round tie for USA against the Netherlands when she won the third point with a 7-5, 6-1 victory over Richel Hogenkamp on Sunday.

Team USA, the reigning Fed Cup champions, won both singles matches on Saturday. The eighth-ranked Williams scored a straight-set triumph over 124th-ranked Arantxa Rus for the first point of the tie, and 17th-ranked CoCo Vandeweghe was thoroughly tested in a three-set thriller with 108th-ranked Richel Hogenkamp before emerging victorious.

Hogenkamp spent two hours and 36 minutes on court in her encounter with Vandeweghe on Saturday, a match in which she was two points from winning at 6-6 in the second set tiebreaker.

“Honestly, I like to think that CoCo wore her (Hogenkamp) down some yesterday,” Williams said after her match with Hogenkamp.

“It gave me an opportunity to be able to close it out for the USA. It gave me a lot of pressure for me to close it out and a lot of pressure for her to stay in and I just handled it a little better.”

Team USA will travel to France to play the semi-finals. The French defeated Belgium 3-2 in their quarterfinal match.

The other semi-final will be contested by Germany and the Cezh Republic after they beat Belarus and Swizterland respectively.