THE PHILIPPINES absorbed a crushing blow after Cecil Mamiit and Treat Conrad Huey dropped a 6-3, 7-5, 6-7 (7-5), 7-6 (8-6) heart-breaker in doubles Saturday night to Chinese Taipei, which stormed to a 2-1 lead in their Davis Cup Asia Oceania Group 1 tie.
The Filipinos fought back from two sets down against Yang Tsung-Hua and Yi Chu-Huan to take third set and even grabbed a 4-2 lead in the fourth but just couldn?t convert to yield the match after three hours and 40 minutes.
Now the Cebuana Lhuillier-Philippine Davis Cup Team will have to sweep the reverse singles Sunday with Mamiit going against Yang, and Huey versus Chen Ti to avoid falling to a relegation tie.
Sensing danger after splitting the opening singles Friday, Mamiit and Huey were called back to action for the doubles against 19-year-old Yang and 24-year-old Yi.
Chinese Taipei?which has yet to win a tie against the Filipinos?pushed the Philippines to the wall after taking the first two sets.
?The boys gave their best but just didn?t get the chances,? said Davis Cup head of delegation Randy Villanueva. ?Crucial singles for Mamiit, I think Treat can handle the rubber match if Mamiit wins.? Marc Anthony Reyes