Five Nigerians are through to
the quarterfinal of the Puma ITF Wheelchair Tennis Futures taking place at the
National Tennis Centre, Package B, National Stadium, Abuja.
Expectedly, Alex Adewale and Wasiu Yusuf, the top two
Nigerian players, made it to the quarterfinals and they are joined in the last
8 of the round of 16 draws for men by Kazeem Akanbi, William Ukari and
KayodeAlabi who all recorded wins in the
playoffs on Wednesday.
All the five Nigerian girls that are featuring in the $3,000
prize-money event are also through to the last eight in the women’s singles
with Foluke Shodehinde having a tough task as she faces top seed, Jane Ndenga
of Kenya in a quarterfinal tie on Thursday.
|Wheelchair tennis players. File Photo|
Kafayat Omisore, Tosin Dawodu, Chituru Nwazuzu and Oluwakemi
Oluwasegun are the other women representing Nigeria.
Kenya are also represented in the men’s event by two players
with Ghana having one and Nigeria’s coach Frank Tarmena is confident that the
home boys will excel against their higher ranked rivals.
“The players are in good shape and are raring to go. They
have trained so much for this championship and they should be able to handle
their foreign counterparts” he said.
Tarmena while admitting that the hosts’ players are
tournament rusty due to lack dearth of domestic tournaments as well as their
inability to attend continental and international championship are aiming at
top finish in the four day event with ITF points at stake alongside monetary
He added: “The standard is as high as you could ever think
of in any part of Africa. Alex and Wasiu remain our brightest hopes and they
look set to take the opportunity that this championship presents having been
inactive on the international stage for some few years.”