Fed Cup: Great Britain to play Japan in World Group II play-off
Great Britain will play Japan in the Fed Cup World Group II play-offs.
A win would move Britain into World Group II in 2019, their highest level since 1993, but a loss would return them to next year’s Europe/Africa Zone.
Johanna Konta and Heather Watson won singles matches as Britain beat Hungary 2-0 earlier this month to advance from the Europe/Africa Zone.
The away tie against Japan will take place on Saturday, 21 April and Sunday, 22 April.
It means Britain have not played a home match in the competition since 1993.
After the win over Hungary, British captain Anne Keothavong said: “It’s been a great effort to get out of this zone and I don’t want to be back here next year. I hope this is the year we get a home tie.”
Britain played in the World Group II play-offs in 2017 but lost 3-2 in Romania to drop back into the Europe/Africa Zone.
As well as last year’s loss, Britain were beaten at the same stage away from home against Argentina in 2013 and in Sweden in 2012.
Konta is ranked 11th in the world, Watson is 74th, with the next highest British women being Naomi Broady (126th) and Katie Boulter (194th).
However, Anna Smith joined Konta, Watson and Boulter in the squad for the Europe/Africa Zone matches, where Britain beat Estonia and Portugal before defeating Hungary to move into the World Group II play-off.
Japan’s top-ranked player is Naomi Osaka, who is 51st in the world and reached the fourth round of the Australian Open earlier this year. Nao Hibino (90th), Kurumi Nara (102nd) and Miyu Kato (128th) are their other highest ranked players.