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Canada to host Romania in Fed Cup World Group playoff tie

02/10/2015 11:29 EST | Updated 04/12/2015 05:59 EDT
MONTREAL - Canada has a chance to return to the elite World Group I of the Fed Cup women's tennis tournament, but whether Eugenie Bouchard is on hand to help remains to be seen.

Canada was drawn on Tuesday to host Romania in a World Group playoff tie April 18-19. Tennis Canada said the venue, choice of surface and roster will be selected at a later date.

That leaves the question on whether Bouchard, the world No. 7 from Westmount, Que., will be available to face Romania. Bouchard declined to play for Canada in last weekend's first-round World Group tie against the defending champion Czech Republic in Quebec City.

The Czechs won the tie 4-0, meaning Canada will have to win a playoff to remain with the top tennis nations in the prestigious World Group I. Bouchard was instrumental in helping Canada advance to the elite group for the first time when she won all four of her Fed Cup matches last year. But team captain Sylvain Bruneau said Tuesday he didn't know of he would have his most potent weapon against a Romanian side that could include world No. 3 Simona Halep.

"I would not be in a position to really say 'yeah, she wants to play' or 'definitely she doesn't want to play,'" Bruneau said on a conference call. "It's another discussion we need to have now."

Bruneau said that Bouchard still enjoys playing Fed Cup matches and wants to represent Canada at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. He said Bouchard has to play in a Fed Cup tie in either 2015 or 2016 to be eligible for the Olympics.

Canada was also missing Aleksandra Wozniak last weekend, as the Fed Cup veteran has recently had shoulder surgery. Bruneau said he does not expect Wozniak to be ready for April's tie.

The squad that faced the Czech Republic consisted of Francoise Abanda, Gabriela Dabrowski, Sharon Fichman and Charlotte Robillard-Millette. Fichman, the highest-ranked player on that squad at No. 135, didn't play due to illness.

Canada is currently ranked ninth in the Fed Cup rankings while Romania is ranked 12th.

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