(photo credit: AP)
Israel advanced to World Group II of the Fed Cup on Thursday for the first time, but it wasn't the way Shahar Pe'er, Anna Smashnova and co. had hoped.
The International Tennis Federation notified the Israel Tennis Association on Thursday that the Indonesian team, scheduled to face Israel in a World Group II playoff tie next weekend in Ramat Hasharon, had decided not to travel to Israel. No official reason was given in the statement.
On Tuesday an Indonesian Foreign Ministry spokesman said that his country would not permit the players to travel.
"We are witnessing a military invasion by Israel and the arrest of scores of Palestinian officials," spokesman Desra Percaya said then. "It is now impossible to play there."
The ITF will fine and likely suspend Indonesia for boycotting the tie.
ITA spokesman Lidor Goldberg told The Jerusalem Post that the ITA will seek to sue the Indonesian Federation via the ITF for expenses incurred while planning to host the tie, as well as the losses from ticket sales.
The tie would have been the first Fed Cup tie on Israeli soil in a decade. The national team is now done for the 2006 campaign and will open 2007 as one of eight teams in World Group II.