NEW DELHI: Yuki Bhambri and Saurabh Singh scored fighting wins in their singles matches to help India beat Brazil 2-1 and qualify for the semifinals in the junior Davis Cup World Group tennis at San Luis Potosi, Mexico.
This has been the best ever performance by an Indian team, boys or girls, in the under-16 tennis event.
Sania Mirza and Ankita Bhambri had helped India reach the fifth position in the world a few years ago, in the Junior Fed Cup.
The under-14 boys team had finished third in the world recently.
Yuki, the youngest brother of national champions Ankita and Sanaa, won all his matches in the league, in both singles and doubles, against Mexico, Britain and Brazil.
The second-seeded India topped group ‘D’. It will take on third seed U.S., in the semifinals.
“Both Saurabh and Yuki played excellent tennis to win their singles matches after dropping the first set,” said Kawaljeet Singh, the captain.
With the cushion of a 1-0 lead for the team, Yuki started on a bright note, breaking Guilherme Clezar in the first game.
However, it was the Brazilian who called the shots soon.
Yuki regrouped after losing the first set to win 3-6, 6-1, 6-1.
With the tie sealed, Yuki was rested for the doubles and S.V. Abhishek got a game.
The Indian duo could have clinched the doubles as well but for Saurabh failing to hold serve at 5-3 in the first set.
Eventually, the Indian pair lost in two tie-breaks.
India beat Brazil 2-1 (Saurabh Singh bt Henrique Tsukamoto 4-6, 6-2, 6-1; Yuki Bhambri bt Guilherme Clezar 3-6, 6-1, 6-1; Saurabh and S. V. Abhishek lost to Tsukamoto and Tiago Fernandes 6-7(6), 6-7(6).