THERE has been much improvement in the level of play at the ongoing 2013 ITF/CAT East African Tennis Junior Championships, at the Dar es Salaam Gymkhana Club (DGC).
The Head Referee, Patrick Kamuhia from Kenya expressed such sentiments to the 'Daily News', when asked for his comment in comparison with previous years.
"We are very impressed with the participation, for it is the first time to have such a high number of players. The level is very good as well and we are very happy so far," he added, after taking his eyes away from the computer screen, in which information of the game was being stored during play.
The ITF Development Officer, Thierry Ntwali, also had much praise for the level of playing he found this time in the tournament. He praised the local team, which he said has grown in its number of players but also for the higher standard of tennis they have displayed, compared to the last time he was here, three years ago, as a coach.
Ntwali even predicted that although the level of play from all the participants is very high this year, there is a possibility for the local team to be amongst the top three finalists. From his observation, since the competition started on Sunday, he could say that Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania have displayed the ability to by-pass the others and hold the top finishing positions.
One of the contributing factors he believes for this is the fact that there are a lot of younger players in this year's local team. This year Tanzania has entered four players in all of the age group categories, who are playing a good level of tennis, he says.
Given such a show of improvement he would not be surprised to see local player securing places in the African Juniors Championship, which is going to be held in Kenya from March 13 to 23 this year.