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Economic crisis-hit Venezuela withdraws from Fed Cup tennis tournament

The move to withdraw from the Fed Cup tennis tournament by the Venezuelan Tennis Federation, means the country will be relegated to Americas Group II next year.

tennis Updated: Jan 10, 2018 09:48 IST
Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse
Fed Cup,Fed Cup tennis tournament,Venezuela Fed Cup team
With Venezuela’s withdrawal from the Fed Cup tennis tournament, players such as Aymet Uzcategui will lose the chance to play in the Americas Group 1 round-robin event against Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Co,ombia, Guatemala and hosts Paraguay.(Getty Images)

Venezuela, which is in the throes of a major economic crisis, on Tuesday announced its withdrawal from Fed Cup competition in 2018, saying it did not have the “necessary resources” to participate.

The move by the Venezuelan Tennis Federation means that the country will be relegated to Americas Group II next year.

In a statement, the federation said it would not be attending the Americas Group I round-robin event on February 7-10 in Asuncion, at which it was to face off with Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Guatemala and host Paraguay.

It said the team could not compete after not receiving any word from the country’s sports ministry, which was responsible for approving payment of the foreign currency needed to attend.

“We recognize the efforts made by sports authorities, but this time, their support was not possible. We apologize to the country’s tennis family,” federation president Luis Contreras said in the statement.

The money woes also called into question Venezuela’s participation in the men’s Davis Cup competition, the statement said, without offering further details.

Venezuela is set to battle Guatemala in an Americas Group II first round tie in early February.

“New opportunities will come,” Contreras said.

Falling oil prices, spiralling inflation, political unrest, and corruption have decimated Venezuela’s economy. And the sports world has not been immune.

In 2017, the country’s volleyball, fencing and softball teams were unable to attend international tournaments when airlines fled the country, leaving them without a way to reach their destinations.

First Published: Jan 10, 2018 09:42 IST