Bajan hopes fade to silver
Barbados’ last hope of capturing gold at the International Junior Tennis faded to silver yesterday when the pair of local player Matthew Hutchinson and Grenadian Yannick James were hammered by the Great Britain duo of Thomas Colautti and Callum Poland-Smith 6-2, 6-1, at the Wildey Tennis Centre.
Class act Colautti, who had earlier taken the boys singles with a 6-3, 6-4 dismissal of No.2 seed Jhonatan Gonzalez of Venezuela, played shots that Hutchinson and James could not match. The height advantage of Poland-Smith also proved lethal at the net.
Hutchinson and James remained in the hunt thanks to a number of aces which occurred through poor reception by the Brits as well as assistance from the blustery conditions in Wildey. However, the British players also saw their opponents committing even more errors on service reception.
The Brits’ court craft was superior and their placement shots were on par with the occasional power whenever Hutchinson and James erred in handing up high gifts to be smashed with disdain. Unfortunately, Hutchinson and James suffered through a lack of understanding and communication which their opponents exploited with line or drop shots.
When Poland-Smith capped the match with an unplayable line shot the roar that he emitted was almost redundant in emphasizing who were the lions on court. James later won the award for the Most Improved Player, while in addition to gold in the singles and doubles, Colautti also won the Sportmanship Award.
In the girls singles No.1 seed Kristina Chasovskikh used up one hour and 37 minutes to defeat compatriot Renata Arshavskaya 6-1, 7-6 in an all-Russian affair.