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Kerber on baby break – Maria and Niemeier to lead ladies

Two Wimbledon surprises Tatjana Maria and Jule Niemeier are expected to save the German women’s tennis team from relegation from the World Group in the Billie Jean King Cup relegation in Croatia.

Due to the baby break of three-time Grand Slam tournament winner Angelique Kerber and the career end of Andrea Petkovic, Wimbledon semi-finalist Maria (world ranking 71st) and Wimbledon quarter-finalist Niemeier (74th) lead the German line-up.

In addition, team manager Rainer Schüttler nominated Laura Siegemund, Anna-Lena Friedsam and, for the first time, young hope Eva Lys for the match on 11 and 12 November in Rijeka.

“With Tatjana, Jule, Laura and Anna-Lena, the four best German players at the moment have been nominated. So we are travelling to Croatia with a top line-up,” Schüttler said in a statement issued by the German Tennis Federation on Friday.

In April, the German women’s tennis team lost to Kazakhstan and thus missed out on qualifying for the final round of the team competition, which had long been called the Fed Cup. Only a win in Croatia will keep the team in the World Group, otherwise the team would be relegated.

“The match is extremely important for us. Of course, it is our ambition to stay in the World Group. Although we have some pressure because of that, we have to prove that we belong,” said Schüttler.

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