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Kvitova to lead Czechs in Fed Cup semi

Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova will lead the reigning titlist Czech Republic in its Fed Cup semifinal against visiting Italy next week.

The best-of-five affair will be staged on an indoor hardcourt at Ostrava's CEZ Arena on April 21-22.

The world No. 3 Kvitova has been slowed by injuries and illness since February and has played only three matches, going 1-2, on the WTA since she led the Czechs past the Germans, 4-1, in a Fed Cup quarterfinal two months ago.

Kvitova will be joined on the Czech squad by last week's Charleston runner-up Lucie Safarova and doubles specialists Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka, who were last year's French Open doubles champs.

Team Italy will be led by 2011 French Open runner-up and 2010 Roland Garros titlist Francesca Schiavone, who will be joined by Roberta Vinci, Flavia Pennetta and Sara Errani.

Italy is 4-1 all-time versus the Czech Republic, including wins in their last four meetings.

The Czech Republic captured its first-ever Fed Cup title last year by besting Russia in the final. The Italians own three titles, including back-to-back ones in 2009 and 2010.

The Czech Republic-Italy winner will meet the Russia-Serbia victor in the World Group final in November.