Fed Cup: No Promotion, No Relegation
With one victory and 2 defeats, the Sri Lanka Fed Cup Tennis team settles in 4th at the Fed Cup Asia Oceania Group II fixture, which concluded on the 15th of June in Dushanbe, Tajikistan. They find no promotion to Group I, neither a relegation back to Group III.
This year, the 13 nations in Group Il competed at two different venues. In Dushanbe where Sri Lanka contested, six teams were in two Pools of 3 teams (Pools A & B). The winners of each pool had to play-off to determine which nation will advance to Asia/Oceania Zone Group I.
Sri Lanka was pooled in with Iran and Singapore to start off their Group stage in the tournament. After a convincing win against Iran in their opening fixture, Sri Lanka faced off against Singapore and Philippines in the latter end of the draw.
After a heartbreaking defeat at the hands of Singapore, 2 – 1, Sri Lanka lost their hopes of making the cut for the sole promotion to Group I of the Asia/Oceania continent. Thereafter, the ladies played against Philippines yesterday (15th June) for the 3rd/4th play-off.
With the team’s opening singles dynamic, Anjalika Kurera, ruled out due to a leg injury, Rukshika Wijesooriya stepped up to the plate to open the scene for Lanka. The match was played in the extremes where each player completely took charge in each of the opening two sets, but eventually the Philippines doubled their winnings.
The Lankan got off to a blistering start, winning the first set 6 games to 1. However, Kim Iglupas of Philippines pounced back fiercely to Sri Lanka’s dismay. Iglupas equaled at 6/1 in the next set and closed out strong with 6/0 final set win. Final scores read 1/6, 6/1, 6/0 in favour of Kim Iglupas.
Already a rubber down, Savini Jayasooriya stepped up in her usual 2nd singles stand, on the hunt for her first win at the tournament. Marian Jade Capadocia heard none of it, as she denied Jayasooriya a win, and secured the 3rd place for Philippines. Final scores read 6/3, 6/1 in favour of Capadocia.
2 rubbers up and with the tie won by Philippines, the doubles was not played.
With this comes the end of Sri Lanka’s hand at the Fed Cup Tennis Championship for 2019. They will hold on to their position in Group II and a ranking of 73rd in the world 271.75 points.