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ALL is set for this year’s Select Healthcare tennis tournament starting this morning at Harare Sports Club and Old Hararians. The tournament is running until Sunday with players from across the country fighting for honours in four age-groups from Under-10 up to Under-18.

The Under-18s and Under-16s will be combined because of poor attendance in the Under-18 age-group in most of the national tournaments.

Tournament director Farai Tapfuma said they have noticed some improvements on the entries for the Under-18s but maintained that they two age-groups will be combined in both the boys and girls sections.

“We have 210 entries. For the Under-18s we have managed to get 22 boys and 23 girls which is better compared to the previous events.

“We will have matches at Harare Sports Club and Old Hararians but we are yet to decide which age-groups will be at Old Hararians,” said Tapfuma.

Tapfuma believes the prizes for the winners, coupled with their offer to assist players that have failed to compete in other events because of financial challenges, has seen the number of entries increasing. “I feel we are going to see good competition. There are kids who were invited, who cannot afford to pay the entry fee and I think it also contributed in increasing the number.

“We don’t have a large number because we selected, at least, two players from each coach from different provinces. But for Harare it was open to all coaches, they gave us the lists of those that cannot manage. For example from Mabvuku we have eight players.

“I also think the number has gone up because the tournament itself motivated the kids last year because of the prizes,” said Tapfuma.

Luca Picci and Mitchelle Marufu won the Under-18 titles in the boys and girls section in the inaugural tournament last year.

Source : The Herald