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Italy beats United States 3-2 in Fed Cup World Group playoff

BRINDISI, Italy -- Top-ranked Serena Williams fought back from a set down to win her singles match over Sara Errani but couldn't produce another victory in the decisive doubles encounter as Italy beat the United States 3-2 Sunday in a Fed Cup World Group playoff.

Brindisi native Flavia Pennetta and Errani defeated Williams and Alison Riske 6-0, 6-3.

It was Williams' first career loss in the Fed Cup, dropping to 16-1 -- 13-0 in singles and 3-1 in doubles.

Earlier, Williams put together an error-filled 4-6, 7-6 (3), 6-3 win over Errani before Pennetta routed 65th-ranked Christina McHale 6-1, 6-1.

Italy returns to the World Group and can compete for the Fed Cup trophy next year while the U.S. is relegated to World Group II.

Belarus 3, Japan 2

TOKYO -- Victoria Azarenka and Olga Govortsova won their doubles match as Belarus defeated Japan 3-2 in the Fed Cup World Group II playoff.

Azarenka and Govortsova beat Shuko Aoyama and Ayumi Morita 6-3, 6-4 in the decisive fifth tie at Ariake Coliseum.

Azarenka defeated Kurumi Nara 6-3, 6-3 in the first reverse singles to give Belarus a 2-1 lead, but Japan pulled even when Morita outlasted Aliaksandra Sasnovich 7-6 (5), 4-6, 6-4.

The result means Belarus will return to World Group II in 2016 for just the third time, while Japan will remain in Asia/Oceania Zone Group I.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.