THE International Tennis Federation (ITF) Junior tournaments ended this Saturday at Harare Sports Club with young sensation, Sasha Chimedza making a podium finish in the girls’ doubles section.
After three weeks of a beautiful display of tennis, the crowds were dispersed from Harare Sports Club this Saturday as the curtain came down on the ITF Juniors tournaments.
Two J100s and one J60 tournaments being hosted in the capital and Harare was a hive of activity for the past 21 days as over 300 players from more than 26 different countries battled for honours.
With crowds now departing from Harare Sports Club, there is a promise from local junior tennis players that they have what it takes to pose a threat to the world’s best.
“We were anticipating that this tournament serves firstly as a way for us to assess the level of competitiveness for our young athletes that are coming up and we’re glad that within the past three weeks, we had at least one Zimbabwean participating in the finals of each of the tournaments that were happening. The first tournament we had three, the second we had one and the last one, we had one as well,” said Tennis Zimbabwe general manager, Kupakwashe Mukurumbira.
As Tennis Zimbabwe shifts focus to the Olympic Games qualification, as well as the Africa Games, the three tournaments were instrumental in talent identification.
“As part of the pathway of preparing our athletes to participate at these particular events these three particular tournaments have given us that platform for us to identify some of the top talent that we can work with as we proceed to the African games,” added Mukurumbira.
Meanwhile, Sasha Chimedza, who arguably has been one of the players to watch throughout the three tournaments did not disappoint on Saturday as she claimed a silver medal in the girls’ doubles.
Unfortunately, none of the local girls and boys could make it to the singles final, but most certainly the locals march out of this tournament with a spring in their step.