BIRMINGHAM (Alabama) (AFP) The United States advanced to a Fed Cup final rematch with defending champion Italy on Sunday with a dramatic 3-2 semi-final victory over Russia. Americans Liezel Huber and Bethanie Mattek-Sands defeated Russias Elena Dementieva and Alla Kudryavtseva 6-3, 6-1 in the decisive doubles match of the indoor hardcourt tie after the teams split singles matches Saturday and Sunday. The US duo broke twice in the first set and again in the first and third games of the second set for a 3-0 lead. The rivals exchanged breaks to 4-1 before the Americans held and broke again to win the match in just 65 minutes. The US women lost at Italy in last years final but will have a chance to avenge that defeat on home soil in the championship showdown November 6-7. The Americans were without Serena and Venus Williams, both absent because of leg injuries. Mattek-Sands outlasted Russias Ekaterina Makarova 6-4, 2-6, 6-3 to pull the United States level at 2-2 after sixth-ranked Dementieva had given Russia a lead by beating Melanie Oudin 7-6 (7/4), 0-6, 6-3. The Russians pulled Kudryavtseva, who lost to Oudin on Saturday, in favor of Makarova for the last singles match, but Mattek-Sands a loser in three of four prior Cup singles matches came through for the hosts. After splitting sets, Mattek-Sands broke for a 2-0 lead in the third set. Makarova broke back in the next game only to have the American break again and hold for a 4-1 lead. An errant forehand by Makarova surrendered another break and gave Mattek-Sands a 5-1 edge but the Russian broke Mattek-Sands in the seventh game and held to pull within 5-3. Mattek-Sands fell behind 15-30 before fightng back and capitalizing on her first match point for the victory after two hours and 34 minutes. Makarova took advantage of 6-of-8 break-point chances while Mattek-Sands converted only 6-of-21 such opportunities. In Sundays opener, Dementieva fell behind 2-1 in the third set, Oudin breaking her for the fourth time in five tries to seize the lead after having ripped through the second set. But Dementieva broke back in the fourth game, broke Oudin again in the sixth game and denied Oudin on a break-point chance in the seventh game to hold for a 5-2 lead. When she came out for the third set, it was like the second set never happened. She was ready to go again, Oudin said. Oudin, 18, held but Dementieva served out the last game to love to win after two hours and 27 minutes, improving to 22-5 in Fed Cup play. This match was most important to the semifinals, Dementieva said. We both were feeling a lot of pressure. In Saturdays singles matches, Oudin defeated Kudryavtseva 6-3, 6-3, but Dementieva answered by downing Mattek-Sands 6-4, 6-3.