Belgians knock out injured Americans

Sports Network

, Last Updated: 11:43 AM ET

Antwerp, Belgium - Recently-crowned Australian Open champ Kim Clijsters rallied to beat Bethanie Mattek-Sands to give the host Belgians an insurmountable 3-0 lead over the United States in the Fed Cup quarterfinals.

Clijsters dropped a first-set tiebreaker to Mattek-Sands of the United States before coming from behind to notch a 6-7 (10-12), 6-2, 6-1 victory. Belgium will face the Czech Republic in April's semifinal.

Yanina Wickmayer is scheduled to play American Melanie Oudin in the second reverse singles match on Sunday, while the doubles match is slated to feature the Belgian tandem of Kirsten Flipkens and An-Sophie Mestach against Liezel Huber and Vania King.

Belgium's lone Fed Cup crown came 10 years ago. The Belgians have now won two of the seven all-time meetings with the United States in Fed Cup play.

The Americans, who had finished as runners-up to Italy each of the last two years, were playing without their top two stars, as both Venus and Serena Williams are sitting out because of injury. Serena is still bothered by a foot injury that kept her out of the Australian Open, while Venus severely pulled a muscle during the Melbourne fortnight -- an injury that forced her to retire just seven points into a fourth-round match against Andrea Petkovic.


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