Team Bahamas crashed out of the World Junior Tennis (WJT) Girls 14s North, Central American and Caribbean Pre-Qualifying Tournament yesterday, falling to the host nation in three matches.
The Bahamas lost to the Dominican Republic (DR) three matches to none, dropping both singles and the doubles match in straight sets.
In the first match of the day, The Bahamas’ number two player Sapphire Ferguson lost in straight sets to Maria Gell, losing 6-0 and 6-2, in a match that lasted a little over an hour.
In the second match of the day, The Bahamas’ number one player Sierra Rodgers fell to Rosario Elmudesi, 6-3 and 6-1; and in doubles, the team of Sapphire and Breann Ferguson, a pair of cousins, fell in straight sets to Elmudesi and Alexa Lerebours, 6-1 and 6-3.
The day before, The Bahamas shut out Barbados three matches to none, to advance to the quarterfinals against the Dominican Republic. However, the DR proved to be too tough for them yesterday.
With the loss, The Bahamas will play a relegation match against Panama today. With a win in that match, they will move on to play in the fifth-sixth place tie, and should they lose against Panama, they will play in the seventh-eighth place tie. In any event, the country has already made significant strides from a year ago when the team finished 14th.
The relegation tie is set for today, and the final placement tie will be played on Thursday. The three-member team, that is coached by Marion Bain, will return to the country on Friday.
Just the two finalists from this pre-qualifying tournament will move on to the World Junior Tennis regional final against countries such as the United States, Canada and Mexico, which is scheduled to take place from April 23-25 on Canadian soil.
Joining the host nation Dominican Republic in the semifinals yesterday were the three top seeds. Top seeded Trinidad & Tobago shut out Panama, three matches to none; second seeded Puerto Rico outlasted El Salvador two matches to one; and third seeded Guatemala knocked off fifth seeded Costa Rica two matches to one.
The other countries that participated were fourth seeded Antigua & Barbuda, Barbados, Jamaica, Suriname, Curaçao and Honduras.
The week-long tournament concludes on Thursday at Parque del Este in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.
The Bahamas ended round-robin play with a 2-1 win-loss record and lost in the quarterfinals to the host nation yesterday.