Nigeria, South Africa grabs World Wheelchair tennis tickets

Mar 02, 2021

Nigeria and South Africa won the men's and women tickets that  will see them represent Africa in the Wheelchair World team cup to be staged in  South Korea in May 2012.


Nigeria won two of the men's singles finals beating Morocco 6-3,6-1 in the first match before Alex Adewale registered a 6-2,6-3 sets over Lhaj Boukartacha (Morocco) to take the West Africans to the doubles final where they lost 6-0,7-7,10-6.Yusuf Wasui needed only 1 hour 20 minutes to win his first match against Moroccan, Jeddi Ahmed with a 6-3,6-1 sets.


Host Kenya finished fourth after pairs, Caleb Odiyo and Edwin Murua both fell to Gambians, Nyang Barra and Sanyang Ousman  in the  third and fourth play-offs in the men's singles respectively.


In the women's single, South Africa won all her two matches against Zimbabwe and host Kenya to grab the continental ticket. 


Kenya finished third losing 0-1, in all the singles matches, before  registering the same score in the doubles.


Tournament director, George Kiganjo was however satisfied by the overall performance by the host.


"The tournament has been a success, i am particularly impressed by the performance of the local players who put up a spirited fight, comparing the type of opponents they had," said Kiganjo.


International Tennis Federation, ITF East Africa development officer, Thierry Ntwali was also full of praise for the local players adding that ITF has lined a number of projects  to popularize  wheel chair tennis across Africa.


"I am particularly impressed by the way they played against Egypt.Nigeria also pulled a surprise, beating Morocco who are ranked but that's tennis," said Ntwali.


"ITF want to explore all the avenue of playing tennis and so far they have  introduced beach tennis and where  tennis will be played in our beaches," added the Rwandan.


The tournament began on Tuesday at the Kenya School of Monetary Studies, KSMS and seven countries including host, Kenya, Gambia,Egypt,Morocco, Zimbabwe, Nigeria and South Africa took part.


ITF Representative in charge of wheelchair tennis,Suzie Dyrbus who presided over the event will be seeking to popularize the sport across the country and starting Saturday, she will be conducting various workshops in Nairobi, Thika and Mombasa.


On Saturday she will be at the Kenyatta University before taking the same program to Thika  Joytown on March 4. On Monday and Tuesday, March 5 and 6, she will be in Mvita sports club before winding up the exercise at Nyayo national stadium on March 7.


The program which is dubbed 'practicals on court'  will bring participants from the ministry of sports drawn from different counties across the country, players drawn from primary and secondary schools and coaches


Kiganjo who is in charge of wheelchair tennis development in the country said that there are plans to host a major championship between September and October.


"Tennis is a very interesting sports and there is growth of the sport currently in the country. Any parent with a disabled child should not isolate them in houses but should register them with us so that they learn the sport. Wheelchair tennis is the next sport for an African child," advises Kiganjo.



Elvince Joshua

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