Japan take 2-0 lead over Belgium


Ayumi Morita and Kimiko Date-Krumm gave Japan a 2-0 lead over Belgium with two singles wins on Saturday in a play-off tie for the Fed Cup tennis World Group. The 22-year-old Morita, ranked 83rd in the world, secured a 6-4, 6-4 win over teenager Alison van Uytvanck to put Japan one up early in the day. Veteran Date-Krumm, former world number four, then defeated Tamaryn Hendler 6-1, 6-4 to move closer to the elite eight-nation World Group in next’s year Fed Cup. The losers of the tie will be relegated to World Group II. Belgium missed former world number one Kim Clijsters, who has a torn hip muscle, and the country’s highest-ranked player Yanina Wickmayer, who wanted to concentrate on the WTA Tour.