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Tennis stars rue Davis Cup ban



Treat Huey is heartbroken over the country’s suspension in the Davis Cup. / PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF Treat Huey/IG

Davis Cup campaigners Francis Casey Alcantara and Treat Huey expressed sadness over the country’s absence in the Asia-Oceania Group III competition in Amman, Jordan.

Alcantara, the 29-year-old former Grand Slam bidder, expressed regret over their failure to compete, saying that some of their friends in the tie were inquiring about their absence in the prestigious competition.

The Philippine Tennis Association (Philta) is serving a two-year ban from the International Tennis Federation (ITF), stripping it the authority of sending a team in the Davis Cup.

The ITF suspended Philta last year on the basis of “long-standing governance failings” after failing to meet the deadline to submit reportorial requirements, including plans for the amendment of its constitution to increase its membership.

“I’m sad that we are banned from playing in the Davis Cup,” said Alcantara, who has been part of the country’s Davis Cup team since 2009.

“I just told them what happened and how we got banned by the ITF.”

Another longtime campaigner, Huey, said the suspension broke his heart.

“It’s heartbreaking that I don’t have the opportunity to represent the country this week and help the team earn promotion in Group II,” said Huey, who had seen action in 21 ties since 2009.

“To have the team withdrawn from the Davis Cup this year by the ITF because of the state of our tennis association is truly sad.”

The country’s Davis Cup team would have been competing against Hong Kong, Jordan, Kuwait, Malaysia, Pacific Oceania, Qatar, Sri Lanka, Syria and Vietnam in the three-round robin stage where the top three nations after the four-day affair will advance to the 2022 World Group II Playoffs.