THE Zimbabwe Davis Cup team bounced to the World Group II Play-offs after beating Senegal 2-1 Friday at the ongoing Davis Cup Africa Group III tournament at the University of Pretoria, South Africa.
Zimbabwe needed a win to ensure they keep their hopes of getting promoted back into the World Group II Play-offs alive and they rose to challenge as they grabbed their second win in Pool B.
With Namibia, who were leading Pool B going into Friday’s matches, losing to Benin 1-2, Zimbabwe who were second placed took over the number one spot, earning their promotion back into the World Group II Play-offs in 2024.
Three teams will be promoted into the World Group II Play-offs and the third slot will be decided today in the promotional play-off between Benin and Togo.
Zimbabwe will face Pool A winners South Africa, who also earned their promotion back to World Group II Play-offs in the positional play-offs to determine the final positions.
Posting on their Facebook Friday, Tennis Zimbabwe hailed the team for their efforts.
“Our Davis Cup Team has topped Group B after beating Benin and Senegal. This means we automatically qualify for promotion into the World Group II.
“Well done Takanyi Garanganga, Benjamin Lock, Benedict Badza, Liberty Nzula, Takura Mhwandagara, you have made us proud. Many thanks to our sponsor Econet Zimbabwe. Tomorrow we play South Africa in the position 1 and 2 play off.”
In Friday’s match Benedict Badza had a good start to the tie when he beat Senegal’s Hassimiyou Dieng 6-2, 7-6 (1) in the first singles match to take Zimbabwe into the lead.
However, Benjamin Lock lost the second match to Seydina Andre 3-6, 3-6, allowing Senegal to level the score.
But it was Zimbabwe who emerged the better team of the day with Lock and Badza defeating Seydina and Hassimiyou in straight sets 6-4, 6-3 in the doubles.
Zimbabwe had on Thursday defeated Benin 2-1 to keep their hopes of promotion alive having lost the opening tie 1-2 to Namibia.
Thursday’s victory revived their campaign. First in action was Benedict Badza and he lost 6-4, 0-6, 1-6 to Sylvestre Monnou before Benjamin Lock came in to level the score with a 6-2, 6-0 victory against Loic Didavi.
Lock and Badza then won the doubles 6-3, 6-2 against the pair of Didavi and Monnou, and going into yesterday’s tie, they knew what needed to be done and they delivered.
South Africa topped Pool A when dismissing Togo 3-0 Friday. The hosts won all their Pool A matches, beating Algeria by the same score in the first tie. They then beat Cote d’Ivoire 2-1 in the second tie on Thursday.
Togo finished second following their wins against Cote d’Ivoire and Algeria to remain on course to fight for the last promotional spot against Benin whose victories against Namibia and Senegal ensured them a place in the promotional play-off as well.
In the relegation play-off Cote d’Ivoire are up against Senegal while Namibia face Algeria.
Two teams will be relegated to the Africa Group IV.