Fed Cup Heart Award Voting Opens
Published March 03, 2011 06:43
LONDON, England - The ITF has announced a shortlist of 10 players nominated for the first four Fed Cup by BNP Paribas Heart Awards of 2011. Awards will be presented in four categories, based on performances in the Fed Cup World Group and World Group II first round ties, and the three Zone Group I events, held at the beginning of February.
Kim Clijsters, Bojana Jovanovski, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Flavia Pennetta have all been given nods in the World Group/World Group II category. Victoria Azarenka and Arantxa Rus have been shortlisted for Europe/Africa; Paraguay's Bianco Botto and Argentina's Florencia Molinero for Americas; and Thailand's Noppawan Lertcheewakarn and Ayumi Morita of Japan for Asia/Oceania.
Having pocketed the Australian Open, Clijsters returned home to Belgium to win both of her singles rubbers against the United States, beating Melanie Oudin and Bethanie Mattek-Sands. Serbian teen Jovanovski, playing just her second Fed Cup tie, stepped up admirably as her country's No.1 player in the absence of Jelena Jankovic and Ana Ivanovic, winning both of her singles matches as well as the doubles against Canada.
Meantime, Pavlyuchenkova - who wasn't even selected on day one of Russia's bout with France - replaced Maria Sharapova in the reverse singles, beating Alizé Cornet and later combining with Svetlana Kuznetsova to win the decisive doubles. And against Australia in Hobart, Italy's Pennetta held her nerve to win a cliffhanger against Samantha Stosur and duly clinched the decisive rubber against Jarmila Groth - in the process extending her Fed Cup singles winning streak to 11.
The shortlist has been compiled by the Heart Award judging panel, which consists of ITF President Francesco Ricci Bitti and a panel of former players and members of the media. A public vote is being held on FedCupcom as well as FedCup.com/es to decide the winners, with voting running from March 1-22. All four winners will receive a silver Baccarat bracelet and a cheque to be donated to their chosen charity.
Click here to read more about all of the nominees and cast your vote!