100 junior tennis players for CBN competition in Kaduna
//Bashe Usman, Kaduna//
NO fewer than 100 players between age 10 and 18 drawn from across the country have registered to participate at the 2016 CBN Junior Tennis Championship scheduled for Murtala Square Kaduna between May 23 and May 28, 2016, the organisers have said.
The tournament to hold in the North for the first time, which is in its 10th anniversary, aimed at discovering and nurturing young talents, enable them compete at early age and showcase their talents, while establishing transition platform to the senior category.
Acting Director, Corporate Communication, Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr Isaac Okoroafor said that there would be prizes for winners and runners-up of the tourney at the various categories of age 10, U-12, U-14, U-16 and 18 years and prizes for the most outstanding players in the boys and girls category, while the winners of 16s and 18s categories will qualify for the CBN Senior Open Championships.
“The 2016 CBN Junior Tennis Championships organised in collaboration with the International Tennis Academy, scheduled to hold at the Murtala Square Kaduna. This years competition marks the 10 year anniversary of its annual event.
“The championship has the objectives to ensure that young talents are discovered early and nurtured to limelight, while establishing a strong transition platform to the senior, to provide a platform that would attract and enable junior players from all over the country compete and showcase their talents.
“To provide a structure that would allow the junior players compete at a very early age and transit from the junior to the senior category. This junior tennis tournament s designed to serve as a feeder to the senior championship, also a major event organised by the Nigeria Tennis Federation in conjunction with CBN.”
Okoroafor, who was represented by Mrs Tiki Tanga, said that the youth tourney has achieved a lot as players from the CBN Junior Circuit have represented Nigeria in the African Junior Tennis Championship and other international competitions. “They have dominated the West African junior circuit in both the boys and girls category and are now set to challenge their South African counterparts.
“They are already challenging the senior players in the CBN Senior Open Tennis Championship. In the current national ranking we have eight players who have gone through this circuit in the top 12 with the first five enjoying the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) ranking. We hope to produce even a larger pools ion of of talents.”
Kaduna state Commissioner for Youth and Sports, Mr Daniel Danauta, in his remarks commended CBN for their efforts in sports development especially tennis, where Kaduna state athletes are doing well at the junior category and internationally.
Also speaking a member of the Kaduna state Tennis Association, Hajiya Fatimah Ahmed commended CBN for its long time sponsorship of tennis, saying that she was a beneficiary of the CBN tennis championship when she participated as a student in Malumfashi, in its third edition in 1980 in Lagos.
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