Young aces shine in junior tennis
The Namibian Tennis Association (NTB) played host to 104 of southern Africa’s best junior tennis players at the recent ITF/CAT Southern Africa Junior Championships. Bob Mould, President of the NTA, said “We are proud to host this important tournament which brings together the best young tennis players from 11 different countries.”
Players from Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe participated in the weeklong competition.
Twenty-one junior players from Namibia participated in the event, and while many showed promise and progress, Sedi Jacobs had the best results. At 14 years of age, Sedi played in the Under-16 category and placed second, losing to top-seeded Theresa van Zyl from South Africa in the finals.
“There are tournaments being held in East, West and North Africa, as well as here in southern Africa, and the best results from each age group will qualify for the Africa Championships which will be held later this year in Egypt,” noted Shepherd Manyumbo, the tournament referee from Zimbabwe.
Given her results in the Southern African Championships, Sedi Jacobs will be invited to represent Namibia at the Africa Championships.
Johan Theron, the tournament director, stressed, “Our juniors need this type of exposure. Unless they play against the best of the best, they won’t improve, so hosting this tournament and being able to send our top players to events in other countries is very important for Namibian tennis. “
For the ITF/CAT Southern Africa Junior Championships, Shell Namibia donated N$50,000, a vital contribution that made the event possible. Pupkewitz Motors/Nissan provided vehicles for transporting the players, while Coke supplied cool drinks and a tent for the tournament. Other supporters included Plascon Paints, Southern Cross Services, Plastic Warehouse and Klein Windhoek Guest House who provided accommodation for the players at reduced rates.