KHARKIV, Ukraine (AP) — Serena Williams overpowered Ukrainian teenager Elina Svitolina 6-2, 6-1 to give the United States a 2-0 lead in the Fed Cup series on Saturday.
In the opening match, American Christina McHale defeated Lesia Tsurenko 6-1, 4-6, 6-3.
The U.S. needs one victory among the reverse singles and doubles on Sunday to return to the top tier of the Fed Cup group.
Williams is making her first Fed Cup appearance on foreign soil in more than a decade to help gain eligibility for the U.S. team at the London Olympics.
The 13-time Grand Slam champion could seal the U.S. win with a victory over Tsurenko on Sunday.