Sunday, February 25, 2018

‘Fed’ girls aim for semi-finals

 TRINIDAD and Tobago’s female tennis players need to defeat the Costa Ricans today to advance to the semi-finals of American Zone Group II of the Fed Cup in Puerto Rico.

T&T came from behind to defeat Uruguay 2-1 in their opening Group D encounter yesterday, the day after Costa Rica, the other team in the round-robin group, took down the South Americans by the same score.

The winners of the four groups will advance to the knockout phase and the winners of tomorrow’s two semis will be promoted to American Zone Group I of the world’s premier female team tennis tournament.

In Group A, both Guatemala and Dominican Republic have beaten Panama 3-0 and Barbados have also lost 3-0 to both Chile and hosts Puerto Rico in Group B. Like Barbados, Panama and Uruguay, Bermuda surrendered any chance of gaining promotion when they lost 3-0 to Peru and 2-1 to Bolivia in Group C.

Olivia Bennett was in the spotlight again as T&T made their debut following a bye when the tournament served off on Wednesday.

A week and a half after completing a triple crown in the Tranquillity Open Tournament, the 23-year-old won singles and doubles to send the Uruguayans out contention for promotion.

The United States-based Annaleise Rose lost the opening match 6-1, 6-4 against Magdalena Boada, but then Bennett forced a decider when she whipped Carolina de los Santos 6-3, 6-4 in the battle of the No. 1 players.

The former top 150-ranked junior in the world and the left-handed Rose then turned back Boado and Ines Canepa 6-1, 7-5.

Two-time national champ Shenelle Mohammed is the other member of the T&T team.