France, the only nation to have always competed in the top division of Fed Cup, meets Italy this weekend on a hard court in Orleans. Alize Cornet, Amelie Mauresmo, Nathalie Dechy, and Severine Bremond will play for France, which won Fed Cup in 1997 and 2003. Italy won Fed Cup in 2006, and will be represented by Francesca Schiavone, Flavia Pennetta, Sara Errani, and Roberta Vinci.
Schiavone was brilliant in 2006, almost single-handedly taking Italy to victory. Both Italy and France have had a hard time of it the last few years, however. Both teams would probably prefer a clay court. Expect Dechy to play doubles for France, most likely with Mauresmo as her partner.