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Kirilenko will open for host Russia against Japan

10:09 AM, Feb 8, 2013   |    comments
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Moscow, Russia (Sports Network) - Maria Kirilenko will lead things off for the hosts, as Russia takes on visiting Japan in a best-of-five opening-round Fed Cup tie this weekend in Moscow.

The world No. 13 Kirilenko, who titled in Thailand last week, will face 32- year-old Kimiko Date-Krumm in Saturday's opening singles rubber, while the second match of the day will pit Russian Ekaterina Makarova against Ayumi Morita at Olympic Stadium.

Sunday's reverse singles have Kirilenko taking on Morita and Makarova battling the 77th-ranked Date-Krumm, while the doubles bout has a Russian team of Elena Vesnina and Margarita Gasparyan tangling with a Japanese pairing of Morita and Misaki Doi.

Team Russia is captained by long-time skipper Shamil Tarpischev.

This will mark the first-ever Fed Cup meeting between four-time champion Russia and Japan. The winner will meet Serbia or the Slovak Republic in a semifinal in April.

The Sports Network

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