The Bahamas finishes sixth at WJT Girls 14s Tournament

Just like their previous meeting five days ago, The Bahamas fell to Costa Rica in three straight matches, and will have to settle for sixth at the World Junior Tennis (WJT) Girls 14s North, Central American and Caribbean Pre-Qualifying Tournament this year.

It was no contest as The Bahamas dropped six out of six sets to fifth seeded Costa Rica. The two singles players fell 6-love and 6-love, and the doubles team lost 6-3 and 6-3.

Sapphire Ferguson got the action started at the Parque del Este in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, on Thursday, falling to Costa Rica’s number two player Allison Blanco, 6-0 and 6-0, in a match that lasted just 50 minutes.

The Bahamas’ number one player Sierra Rodgers didn’t fare much better, falling to Costa Rica’s number one Daniela Rodriguez in straight sets, 6-0 and 6-0. That match lasted an hour and five minutes. In doubles, the pair of cousins Sapphire and Breann Ferguson fought valiantly, but dropped a straights sets decision to the Costa Rican pair of Blanco and Lucia Gallegos, 6-3 and 6-3. That match lasted an hour and 30 minutes.

On Sunday, The Bahamas also dropped six out of six sets to Costa Rica, losing their only tie of the round-robin segment of the week-long tournament. The trio of Rodgers and the cousins won just one game on Sunday, which came in the doubles competition, but bounced back to win six games on Thursday – all in doubles.

Be that as it may, Costa Rica truly proved to be the dominant team.

The Bahamas started off the pre-qualifying tournament on Saturday, defeating Antigua & Barbuda, two matches to one. On Sunday they lost to Costa Rica, and on Monday, they defeated Barbados three matches to zero. On Tuesday, The Bahamas lost to the host Dominican Republic in the quarterfinals, three matches to none. On Wednesday, the country defeated Panama, three matches to none to move on to the fifth-sixth place tie, and on Thursday, they lost to Costa Rica again, to finish sixth.

They were eliminated from contention for the World Junior Tennis regional final against countries such as the United States, Canada and Mexico, with that loss to the Dominican Republic on Tuesday. The World Junior Tennis regional final is set to take place from April 23-25 on Canadian soil. The Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico prevailed as the two qualifiers for the regional final in April.

Other countries to play in the week-long tournament were Trinidad & Tobago, Guatemala, El Salvador, Jamaica, Suriname, Curaçao and Honduras.

The Bahamas made significant strides from a year ago when the country finished 14th, moving up to sixth this year.

The three-member team, that is coached by Marion Bain, will return to the country today.

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Sheldon Longley

Sheldon Longley joined The Nassau Guardian in January 2001 as a sports reporter. He was promoted to sports editor in 2008. Sheldon has an extensive background in sports reporting. He covered three Olympic Games and three world championships, along with multiple smaller regional and local games.

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