Blaise Bicknell brushed aside Darian King 6-1 6-0 to draw Jamaica level at 2-2 and extend their World Group II Davis Cup Playoff tie to a fifth and deciding rubber at the Eric Bell Centre in Kingston.

King, hampered by a left knee injury, was never in the contest as Bicknell dominated exhibition style.

"I played well throughout. Of course, he's not 100 percent but I thought I made very good decisions out there and I made him work for what he needed to."

Jamaica, who took the lead through Bicknell in the first singles rubber, fell behind after King beat Rowland Phillips to close Saturday and then returned alongside Haydn Lewis to snatch a thrilling doubles contest to start Sunday's action.

It means the tie will be decided by Jamaica's Phillips and Kaipo Marshall of Barbados and Bicknell, ranked 319 in the world said he has all confidence that Phillips can get the job done for Jamaica.

"If there's anyone I want in this position is Randy because he's Mr Davis Cup, as we call him."

Phillips is Jamaica's winningest Davis Cup player with 26 wins against 12 losses.

Marshall has recorded just one win in eight matches but that success came heroically against Pacific Oceania's Clement Mainguy last year when he rallied from a set and 4-5 down to win and keep Barbados in Group II.

The winner of this tie will remain in Group II, while loser will be relegated to Group III this summer. from my Galaxy


Darian King and Haydn Lewis have given Barbados a 2-1 lead over Jamaica after defeating Blaise Bicknell and Rowland Phillips in a thrilling doubles rubber in their World Group II Davis Cup Playoff tie at the Eric Bell Centre in Kingston.

King and Lewis rallied from a set down to secure victory 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 in 2 hours and 45 minutes.

The tie was locked at 1-1 after Saturday's opening day which saw Bicknell beating Kaipo Marshall 6-1 3-6 6-1 and King edging Phillips in a 6-3 3-6 7-5 thriller.

The Jamaican pair edged a very tight first set, after breaking Lewis' serve in the seventh game, before they closed it out at the second opportunity by again breaking the Barbadians in the ninth.

While the first set had just one break of serve, there were three in the second with Barbados claiming two in the third and seventh games before King served out the set at love.

It set up a blockbuster third set and it was Barbados who held their nerve on the back of an outstanding performance from Lewis.

The lefty volleyed and returned superbly and then closed it out with precision serving.

"I have been in this situation a lot of times and I understand Darian, he's been my partner for many years, so I know that he can get down, so a lot of times I have to be the one to take control."

The 38-year-old has been representing Barbados at this level for 22 years and he drew on all his experience in the final set.

He was clinical in the decider, controlling the big moments when others seemed indecisive.

Overall it was a high quality match, with all four players having their moments.

King saved four set points when serving down 1-2 in the third, pulling out the marathon game despite a controversial line call unfortunately going against them.

Another big moment was when the Jamaicans saved four break points when Phillips was serving at 3-3, but Barbados ultimately won the marathon game after 20 minutes, which was the crucial break needed to take the match.

Blaise Bicknell is currently facing Darian King in the first reverse singles, a match Jamaica must win to stay alive in the tie, and remain in Group II.


Things remain evenly poised between Jamaica and Barbados at 1-1 in their World Group II Davis Cup playoff tie, as Darian King bettered Jamaican counterpart Rowland Phillips in an entertaining second rubber at the Eric Bell Tennis Centre in Kingston on Saturday.

After Jamaica’s Blaise Bicknell recovered from a second set slump to beat Kaipo Marshall 6-1, 3-6, 6-1 in the first contest, King outlasted Phillips 6-3, 3-6, 7-5 in a tough encounter that took two hours and 54 minutes to decide a winner.

The contest, as expected, was characterized by long grinding rallies given the style of play of both King and Phillips.

In the end, it was the 31-year-old Barbadian ranked at 547 in the world that took top honours over his 30-year-old opponent, who played with a heavily bandaged right knee.

Action concludes on Sunday with the doubles rubber and reverse singles.

Blaise Bicknell recovered from a second set slump to beat Kaipo Marshall and give Jamaica the advantage against Barbados following the first rubber of their World Group II Davis Cup playoff tie at the Eric Bell Tennis Centre in Kingston on Saturday.

Bicknell prevailed 6-1 3-6 6-1.

Despite a sluggish start, and the first three games going to deuce, Bicknell saved break point in the opening game of the contest and fought to a 3-0 lead, before ultimately running away with the set 6-1.

The 21-year-old Barbadian responded in the second set, breaking early, before shocking the partisan crowd by rushing to a 3-0 lead.

However, the 22-year-old Bicknell, ranked 319 in the world and number one in the Caribbean, momentarily pulled his game together with precise serving and strong forehands to level at three apiece.

The momentum again shifted with Marshall breaking once on his way to winning the next three games and take the set 6-3.

He saved three break points and squandered three set points, before holding his nerve when Bicknell dumped a backhand return in the net. 

Last year, Marshall heroically, came from a set and 4-5 down to beat Pacific Oceania's Clement Mainguy to keep Barbados in group II, but he couldn't complete this mission, as Bicknell, sensing the challenge, stepped up and ran away with the third 6-1, punctuating the victory with a second serve ace.

"I didn't play my best but I found a way to get the job done," Bicknell said following the win in sweltering heat.

"I played a good first and third set and once I relaxed I was comfortable,” he added.

Marshall also felt he was far from his best.

"I definitely didn't play the level I wanted to today, I felt definitely like I was right there with him, but I felt like I defeated myself,” he lamented.

Neither player hit their best game on the day, but ultimately, Bicknell's superior quality was the difference.

There were moments he looked like the man who is coming off his first ATP challenger title. His serve out wide on the deuce court in big moments was a major factor, and his heavy forehand also did a lot of damage.

Marshall struggled on second serve. He hit four doubles in his first service game, a problem which persisted throughout the match.

The day's second rubber between Darian King of Barbados and Rowland Phillips of Jamaica is currently underway.

Action concludes on Sunday with the doubles rubber and reverse singles.

Barbados’ ace tennis player and senior men’s national footballer Darian King is now a married man.

King, 31, the island’s leading Davis Cup player and 2017 US Grand Slam competitor tied the knot with long-time sweetheart Oya Thompson last Saturday in Barbados.

The ceremony was held at the St Patrick’s Roman Catholic Cathedral, with officiant Father Clement Paul.

King, who donned a white tuxedo, black pants and shoes to match the white, silver and black theme, said “ I Do” to Oya, daughter of the Late Prime Minister David Thompson and former St John MP Mara Thompson around 3:30 p.m. in the presence of family and close friends.

King has a career-high ATP singles ranking of 106 achieved in May 2017.

He’s currently ranked #907.


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