Re: Fed Cup 2013
^I strongly doubt that the others would have a strong preference for playing in Australia. All the WTA tournaments in that period are on clay in Europe, so it screws with any of them who are intending to play on that tour (Sam and Jarka at least).
If the tie is played in Australia and Sam plays, she can basically forget Stuttgart, which starts the next day. Sam usually does well there, not least because it's the clay surface that most closely matches that at Roland Garros. Missing Stuttgart would basically leave Madrid (much faster than Paris, hardly a clay court at all) and Rome (much slower than Paris) as her only preparation on red clay before the FO.
That's a big sacrifice to ask of your country's only top 10 player/slam winner in recent history. I can't recall any other top player on the tour ever travelling to literally the other side of the world to play FC just when their best season is starting.