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Citing travel schedule, defending champion Italy will rest its top players at US in Fed Cup

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ROME - Defending champion Italy will not use its top players at the United States in the first round of the Fed Cup.

The Italian tennis federation says in a statement that Sara Errani, Roberta Vinci, Flavia Pennetta and Francesca Schiavone asked to skip the Feb. 8-9 competition in Cleveland.

Instead, Italy captain Corrado Barazzutti will likely rely on Camila Giorgi, Karin Knapp, Nastassja Burnett and Alice Matteucci.

The top players cited a travel schedule that would have taken them from the Australian Open to a tournament in Paris, then Cleveland, then to another tournament in Doha, Qatar — over a 16-day span.

Errani and Vinci won the Australian Open doubles title Friday.

Barazzutti says, "We decided to accept the request of our veterans."

The team will be named officially Wednesday.

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