Captain on Serena: 'She's ready to go'


BOCA RATON, Fla. -- U.S. Fed Cup captain Zina Garrison expects Serena Williams to recover from an ankle injury and play in the team's first-round series against Belgium next week.

Garrison said Thursday she spoke to Williams' representatives, who termed the injury "just a slight little sprain."

"She's ready to go," Garrison said during a conference call. "She's already setting up her practice sessions."

The U.S. team consists of top-ranked Lindsay Davenport, former No. 1s Serena and Venus Williams, and former top-ranked doubles player Corina Morariu.

The Williams sisters and Davenports haven't played Fed Cup together since 1999, when the United States won the team event. Serena has won seven Grand Slam singles titles, Venus four and Davenport three. Morariu and Davenport were the doubles runners-up at the Australian Open this year.

The U.S. has won all three previous Fed Cup matches against Belgium.

Belgian's best players Justine Henin-Hardenne and Kim Clijsters will not play. That leaves the Belgians without a player in the top 150 for the April 23-24 series at Delray Beach. Their team will be Kirsten Flipkens, Els Callens, Leslie Butkiewcz and Eveline Van Hyfte.

Garrison is disappointed Henin-Hardenne and Clijsters chose not to play.

"I'm a true advocate of Fed Cup and I'd like the best competition," Garrison said. "You also want the best competition
for people to come out and watch."