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Last Updated: Saturday, 15 September 2007, 14:37 GMT 15:37 UK
Kuznetsova wraps up Fed Cup win
Svetlana Kuznetsova
Kuznetsova overpowered Schiavone to secure Russia victory
Russia secured their third Fed Cup win in four years as Svetlana Kuznetsova held off Italy's Francesca Schiavone for an unassailable 3-0 lead in Moscow.

The world number two saved two match points in the second set tie-break before hitting back to win 4-6 7-6 7-5.

It was the 22-year-old's seventh win in nine meetings over her opponent.

Favourites Russia had enjoyed a commanding 2-0 lead after day one when US Open finalist Kuznetsova and Anna Chakvetadze both won their singles.

Kuznetsova had crushed Mara Santangelo 6-1 6-2 while Chakvetadze was given more of a match by Schiavone, before winning 6-4 4-6 6-4.

But on Sunday, Kuznetsova looked frustrated for much of her match with the combative Schiavone.

After surviving her second set tie-breaker to force the third set, she broke in the ninth game with the help of two net-cords to lead 5-4.

Russia celebrate
Kuznetsova's Russia team-mates celebrate her win

Schiavone, star of Italy's 3-2 semi-final victory over France in July, when she won all three of her matches, battled back brilliantly to level at 5-5.

But Kuznetsova had the last word, gaining another break in the next game, then coming back from 0-30 to win the last four points in the match and securing victory after two hours 45 minutes.

"I was really too nervous today, especially at the beginning," Kuznetsova said. "Later I managed to settle down and find my rhythm.

"Francesca played well, it was probably her best match in recent years. But our fans and my team-mates' support really helped.

"I also felt slightly better physically prepared for today's match."



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