Sports

Published on February 1st, 2014 | by John Lyons

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Doubles defeat puts Chile on the ropes

Chile will have to win both singles matches tomorrow if they are to beat Barbados in the Davis Cup.

Barbados – That is the grim reality for captain Nicolás Massú and his team after the home side won the doubles this afternoon.

The omens weren´t good for Chile when Hans Podlipnik was forced to pull out of the match at the last minute after injuring himself in the warm-up. That meant a late call-up for Christian Garín to play alongside the experienced Jorge Aguilar.

The Barbados duo of Darian King and Haydn Lewis won the first set 6-4, but Chile claimed the second 6-3 to level it up. The third set looked as though it would be pivotal and it was the hosts who took it 7-4 in the tie-break.

Chile couldn´t react in the fourth set and unheralded Barbados clinched it 6-3 to win the match and go 2-1 up in the series.

Now the pressure is on Chile youngsters Garín, 17, and Gonzalo Lama, 20, to win tomorrow to prevent Chile going down to a shock defeat in the Americas Zone Group II clash.

Lama (289) needs to beat Barbados number one King (458) to level up the series. That would force a decider between Garín (380) and the unranked Lewis.

Meanwhile, wild cards Lama and Garín both face tough tasks in the first round of the Royal Guard Open in Viña del Mar next week.

Lama has been drawn against the holder Horacio Zeballos. The Argentinian famously beat Rafael Nadal in the final last year.

Garin will take on the man who beat him in last year´s competition, Jeremy Chardy. Garín won the first set against the then world number 26 6-4 before the Frenchman rallied to win the next two 6-3, 6-2.

Chardy, ranked 43, is the fifth seed this time around. The top four, Fabio Fognini (15), Tommy Robredo (16), Nicolás Almagro (17) and Marcel Granollers (35) all have a bye in the first round.

Qualifying for the ATP tournament got under way on Saturday and there were some early Chile successes. Bastian Malla beat his compatriot Felipe Garces 6-0, 6-2 to line up a match against qualifying top seed, Guido Pella, of Argentina, tomorrow.

Matias Sborowitz triumphed 6-3, 6-1 against Lukas Dlouhy, of the Czech Republic, and will play Argentinian Martin Alund tomorrow.

Alund demolished Chile´s David Fleming 6-1, 6-0 today, while Spain´s Ruben Ramirez Hidalgo beat Chile´s Myrohn Miranda by the same score.

*Nicolás Jarry (828) lost 3-6, 6-0, 6-2 to Argentinian Andrea Collarini (257) in the final of the Futuro Argentina F1 in Córdoba.


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