*Martins Abamu returns a serve during the African Junior Tennis Championships, AJTC, qualifiers held in Abuja. He is one of the players expected to feature at this year’s CBN junior tennis championship. Photo by Ebenezer Osamo –
By Ebenezer Osamo –
Winners of this year’s Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Junior Tennis Open will feature in the senior edition of the competition next month.
This much was disclosed by the Director, Corporate Communications Department of CBN, Ugo Okoroafor, during a media parley to herald the eighth edition of the annual championship.
Okoroafor, who was represented by head, Internal Communications Department of CBN, Mrs. Odessa Ogunmola, explained that the move would further spur the youngsters to have more belief in themselves and will also give them the required exposure.
He said: “The winners of this year’s U-16 and U-18 categories are expected to contest in the senior championships.
“This will further boost their confidence and give them the self belief, which will help them go all out against any form of opposition”.
Okoroafor added that, “With the youngsters churning out impressive displays, we hope that more corporate organisations will see the need to join in the sponsorship of tennis in the country to further move Nigerian tennis forward”.
Speaking also at the event was UK-based former female national champion, Cecilia Nnadozie-Jones, who encouraged the youngsters to make the best use of every opportunity that comes their way.
The former world number 200 player on the WTA explained that she did not value some opportunities that she had when she was younger, and hopes that the upcoming players will not be the same.
“I want to advise the upcoming players to know that whatever opportunity that tennis brings their way is not going to come always. So they should take every opportunity that comes their way.
“I missed some opportunities when I was a top player and today I would say that I missed such opportunities but that is life for you”, she said.
The junior championship will start on Monday, 24 February and end on Sunday, 1 March, 2014 inside the Lagos Lawn Tennis Court, Onikan, Lagos.