A report (written yesterday) from the http://www.satennis.co.za
site (the report also features a photo of Chani Scheepers). "Denmark and Great Britain appear to be the major threats to South Africa winning next week's Euro/Africa Group 2 Fed Cup qualifier to be played at the Groenkloof tennis courts in Pretoria.
Only 14 of the original 25 countries named for the qualifier will be sending teams to Groenkloof from April 9 to 13, and they are Algeria, Botswana, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, Great Britain, Ireland, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Malta, Norway, Tunisia and hosts South Africa.
Eva Dyrberg of Denmark is the only player participating in the event who has a singles ranking in the top 100 while the majority of players are not listed at all on the WTA rankings list. While Dyrberg is ranked 90 in singles and 163 in doubles, her likely number two, Karina Jacobsgaard, is ranked 451 in singles and 487 in doubles.
The strongest team on paper at least, appears to be Great Britain. They are spearheaded by Julie Pullin (164 singles, 116 doubles) and she is backed up by Lucie Ahl (162 and 315), Elena Baltacha (225 and 341) and Rachel Viollett (229 and 780).
The South African team comprises Natalie Grandin (246 and 117), Nicole Rencken (300 and 284), Chani Scheepers (382 and 376) and Nannie de Villiers (628 and 65). The captain is Mariaan de Swardt.
Another team likely to give the other 13 countries a few problems is Ireland. All the players are reasonably well ranked and they are almost sure to be seeded.
Rankings, however, can prove deceptive in events such as this as the South Africans discovered last year when playing Estonia in La Manga. They arrived with the world number one junior who despite having no official ranking, defeated Grandin in two tough sets."