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Bermuda suffer defeat in Davis Cup opener

Bermuda slumped to defeat in their opening Davis Cup Americas Group III clash with Costa Rica at the Club de Tenis La Paz in La Paz, Bolivia.

The Island’s four-man squad lost the three match Group B round robin series 2-1 against their opponents who are ranked 44 places above them in the ITF Davis Cup rankings

The result enabled Costa Rica to improve their overall head-to-head record against Bermuda to 8-2.

Playing on red clay surface at high altitude, Gavin Manders gave Bermuda a dream start after getting past Pablo Nunez in a hard fought three setter.

In the opening set Manders found himself trailing 15-40 at 5-4 on serve but managed to hold to even the score at 5-5 before going on to beat his rival 7-1 in a tiebreaker and win the set 7-6.

A mental lapse by Bermuda’s top player allowed Nunez to come into the match and take the set 2-6.

However, Manders regained his intensity and continued to pressure his opponent before taking the third set 6-3 to clinch the match and improve his Davis Cup singles record to 8-5.

Manders’ victory brought Bermuda on the verge of a series win.

But they failed to capitalise after Jenson Bascome lost his singles match to Ignacio Roca 6-2, 6-4 that evened the series and set up a winner takes all doubles showdown.

Costa Rica then clinched the series after Manders and Bascome went down 6-2, 6-3 in their doubles match against Reifer and Roca.

Bermuda’s non playing captain Ricky Mallory said his players found the outcome hard to swallow.

“The guys are really disappointed with the result because once we got into the matches the players, especially Jensen, realised that Costa Rica was definitely beatable,” he told

The Royal Gazette.

Mallory described playing conditions in Bolivia as challenging but made no excuses for his team’s defeat.

“The conditions are very hard here with the colder weather and high altitude ball which makes play a lot faster,” he said. “But both teams play under the same conditions, it’s just a matter of who adjusts the best and Costa Rica were able to make the necessary adjustments.”

Bermuda will now look to bounce back when they face Panama in their second Group B fixture today.

Team Bermuda lost their opening Davis Cup Americas Group III series with Costa Rica in Bolivia yesterday Pictured from left to right are: Naim Azhar, Steve Bean (assistant coach), Gavin Manders, Ricky Mallory (captain and coach), Jenson Bascome, Alex Cooper, Lionel Bartley (manager).

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Published June 17, 2013 at 9:59 pm (Updated June 17, 2013 at 9:59 pm)

Bermuda suffer defeat in Davis Cup opener

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