By RENALDO DORSETT
A DISAPPOINTING outing on the courts for the past two days at the North/Central America and Caribbean Pre-qualifying for the Junior Fed Cup and Davis Cup leaves the Bahamas relegated to the lower tier of the playoff rounds.
In the Junior Davis Cup, the team of Shannon Francis, Joshua Turnquest and Justyn Thompson dropped consecutive matches to Trinidad and Tobago and Costa Rica.
Against Trinidad and Tobago, Francis won 7-6(3) 5-7, 6-4 over Elan Murray-Mendes and, in the other match, Joshua Turnquest lost in singles play to Nabeel Mohammed 6-3, 4-6, 4-6.
Francis and Turnquest fell in doubles play to Murray-Mendes and Nabeel Mohammed 6-4, 6-7 (4), 2-6.
A fast start against Costa Rica quickly turned in the opposite direction when the Bahamas dropped their next two matches.
Turnquest won in singles over Eduardo Camacho 6-7(3), 6-7(6).
However, Alberta de Mendiola topped Francis 6-0, 6-1, while in doubles Thompson and Francis lost to Gonzalo Adis and Mendiola 6-1, 6-2.
The Bahamas finished third in Group D and is now slated to face Bermuda in the 9th-12th playoff round.
The draw began with a sweep over the US Virgin Islands 3-0, without surrendering a single set in three matches.
In singles play, Turnquest topped Julian Dipersio 6-2, 7-5 and Shannon Francis won 7-5, 6-1 over Jordan Lawrence.
In doubles, Francis and Justyn Thompson defeated Depersio and Wilbur Williams 6-2, 6-3.
The Junior Fed Cup team of Shaytonya Missick, Iesha Shepherd and Jade Bastian are still searching for their first win after they fell 2-1 to Guatemala.
Ana Schedelgar topped Missick 6-3, 6-1 and Shepherd split the singles matches with a 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 win over Camila Ramazzini.
Doubles play was the deciding factor and the combination of Ramazzini and Karla Cordero topped Shepherd and Missick 6-1, 6-3.
The Bahamas is now set to face Honduras in the 9th-12th playoff round.
They opened with a 2-1 setback at the hands of Bermuda.
Missick began her singles match with a dominant 6-0 win in the first set over Eva Frazzoni, but fell 6-0, 6-2 in the remaining sets.
Shepherd won in singles 6-4, 6-3 over Taylor Mcharg, but the duo fell in doubles 6-3, 7-6(1) to Mcharg and Frazzoni.
Junior Fed Cup and Junior Davis Cup by BNP Paribas is an international team competition for girls and boys respectively in the 16 and under age category.
Nations enter regional qualifying events with the winners progressing to the finals where they compete to be crowned champion.
In 2013, the finals will be held in San Luis Potosi, Mexico, September 24-29, with 16 nations battling it out for glory.
Junior Davis Cup by BNP Paribas is also contested at the same time.
According to its website, the Junior Fed Cup and Junior Davis Cup by BNP Paribas were launched by the ITF in 1985 as the 16-and-under World Youth Cup, and rebranded in 2002.
BNP Paribas has been the title sponsor of the Junior Davis Cup since 2002, before going on to sponsor Junior Fed Cup in 2005.
The finals have been held in 14 countries in the competition’s 29-year history, and this year will return to La Loma Centro Deportivo in San Luis Potosi, which previously hosted the event in 2008-11.
Last year’s Junior Davis Cup and Junior Fed Cup champions were Italy boys’ team and USA girls’ team.