South Africa got their Fed Cup Group III campaign off to a winning start in Cairo, Eygpt on Thursday.
The format for the women’s tournament is┬á a found-robin with 10 nations in two pools. The top nation in each pool plays off against runner-up in the other pool, with two winning nations earning promotion to Europe/Africa Zone Group II for 2012.
Played on clay at the Smash Tennis Academy, the tournament’s first day saw South Africa beating Algeria 3-0 in their Group A round-robin clash.
Our top-ranked singles player, Chani Scheepers missed this tournament because she was in action in Madrid, Spain but Natalie Grandin and Chanel Simmons flew the SA flag in her absence.
Grandin beat Samia Medjahdi 6-1 6-2 while Simmonds was made to fight a little harder before accounting for Assia Halo 7-6 (4) 6-2. The two then combined in the doubles to beat Halo and Fatima Zorah Bouabdallah 6-3-6-4.
Pools and teams for the tournament are:
South Africa: Chanel Simmonds, Natalie Grandin, Natasha Fourouclas, Madrie Le Roux, Greer Leo Smith (captain)
Algeria: Assia Halo, Fatima Zohra Boukezzi, Samia Medjahdi, Fatima Zohra Bouabdellah, Mourad Meghari (captain)
Lithuania: Lina Stanciute, Joana Eidukonyte, Lina Padegimaite, Aurelija Miseviciute, Edita Liachoviciute (captain)
Montenegro: Danka Kovinic, Tamara Stanic, Vladica Babic, Danica Krtstajic (playing captain)
Norway: Ulrikke Eikeri, Emma Flood, Caroline Rohde-Moe, Hedda Odegaard, Jon-Erik Ross (captain)
Egypt: Magy Aziz, Menna El Nagdy, Mai El Kamash, Mayar Sheriff, Nael Zaki (captain)
Ireland: Amy Bowtell, Julia Moriarty, Lynsey McCullough, Sinead Lohan, Pat Crowe (captain)
Moldova: Iulia Helbet, Alina Soltanici, Anastasia Vdovenco, Daniela Ciobanu, Valeriu Helbet (captain)
Tunisia: Ons Jabeur, Abbes Nour, Sonia Dagou, Hamid Anis Bouchlaka (captain)