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Halep, Kvitova lose as Romania ties with Czech Republic in Fed Cup

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BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) Monica Niculescu beat two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova 6-3, 6-4 to ensure Romania tied with the Czech Republic 1-1 on the opening day of their Fed Cup first-round tie on Saturday.

In the first singles, Karolina Pliskova overcame Simona Halep 6-7 (4), 6-4, 6-2 for the first time, in a match lasting more than 2 1/2 hours in the Transylvanian city of Cluj.

Kvitova, who has won 26 of her 33 Fed Cup singles, including seven of the last eight, was expected to extend the Czechs' advantage, but she committed 46 unforced errors against Niculescu's 12.

“You were wonderful, without you I couldn't have done it,” Niculescu told the crowd.