By Anashe Murombedzi
THE under 14 Africa junior championships held in Tunisia saw Zimbabwe sending 8 junior tennis players, comprising four boys and four girls.
The players qualified based on their Confederation of African tennis rankings.
In the girls singles, Kudzai Chapepa and El Zein were exceptional in their first and second rounds but they found the going tough and failed to qualify for the quarter-finals.
It was even worse for Tinotenda Chipfakacha and Ruvarashe Magarira who failed to proceed to the second round.
The boys’ team struggled in their opening matches as Tinotenda Chivenga, Nathan Tsaura, Nonan Mtisi and Malachi Harry fell in the first round.
In the boys’ doubles, Tinotenda Chivenga teamed up with Nonan Mtisi and reached the quarterfinals before losing to a Tunisian duo, while Harry Malachi and Nathan Tsaura fell in the first round.
The girls’ doubles team lost in the first round.
However, Zimbabwe Junior tennis team coach Alison Fryer believes the experience was good for the players.
“Our Zimbabwean players have played with a lot of heart and done well in the consolation rounds. I hope they can learn from this experience and see which areas of their game they need to work on to improve their positions for next time,” said Alison Fryer, the team coach.
The African Junior Championship was clinched by Tunisia.