Home » Sports » Harare’s Wimbledon Gets Underway

MORE than 200 participants are expected to converge at Harare Sports Club for the Arenel Wimbledon Biscuits Harare Junior Open tennis tournament starting this morning.

The four-day tournament will end on Tuesday and the young players will compete in the boys and girls Under-10, Under-12, Under-14 and the combined 16 and 18 age-groups.

This year’s tournament is being sponsored by biscuits manufacturer Arenel through their brand of Wimbledon biscuits and the sponsorship package was unveiled on Thursday ahead of today’s competition.

Tournament director, Linsent Chitiyo, said they will use three venues with Harare Sports Club being the main venue becasue of the high turnout.

“We had 242 entries as of Wednesday and our biggest entries are in the Under-10, Under-12 and the combined 16-and-18 boys.

“We have St George’s, Harare Sports Club and Old Hararians as the venues but Harare Sports Club is our main venue,” said Chitiyo.

Chitiyo said there is also an improvement in the girls Under-18 age group for this tournament compared to other events where there has been low turnout and in some instances competition for this particular age group had to be cancelled.

“At this moment we can safely say we have 25 players for the Under-18 girls, it’s probably going to be a draw of 32.

“Our entries on the girls section are very much competitive this year. The moment the majority of the people heard that Arenel were coming on board the interest became high.

“Some of the top players that have entered are Luca Picci, Michael Gutu, Mark Chigaazira in the boys section and Rufaro Chirewa, Zahra Finnigan and Tariro Dembo in the girls competition.

“The competition level is going to be really high from the quarter-finals going to the finals, it’s going to be top competition and it will be the survival of the fittest,” said Chitiyo.

The tournament director said they are using the feed-in system whereby all players will play the same number of matches even those that would have been eliminated in the first round.

“We are also going to use the feed-in system, the same number of matches played by the winner will be the same number of matches played by a person who loses in the first round.

“This is for exposure of our players,” said Chitiyo.

Picci is the defending champion in the boys Under-18 while Finnigan is the girls title holder and both players will be out to defend their titles when the event takes off today.

Source : The Herald