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Serena Williams earned a comprehensive victory over Ukrainian teenager Elina Svitolina with a 6-2, 6-1 scoreline and gave the United States a 2-0 lead in the Fed Cup series on Saturday.
In the opening encounter, American Christina McHale rallied past Lesia Tsurenko 6-1, 4-6, 6-3. Now, the U.S. team needs one victory among the reverse singles and doubles encounters on Sunday to return to the top tier of the Fed Cup group.
When asked about U.S. captain Mary Jo Fernandez, Williams quoted, "It's easier in the Fed Cup, as you have a coach who can help and encourage to stay focused."
On the other hand, the Czech Republic team earned a 2-0 lead over Italy after Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova and Lucie Safarova won their opening singles matches of the Fed Cup semi-final on Saturday.
Safarova edged past Francesca Schiavone 7-6 (3), 6-1 before Kvitova thrashed Sara Errani 6-4, 6-3.
Reverse singles and the doubles will be played on Sunday.
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