LOCAL players held the flag flying high on Friday in the semi-finals of the 2013 ITF/CAT East African Tennis Junior Championships, at the Dar es Salaam Gymkhana Club (DGC) . Now for the first time in history Tanzania's players are amongst the finalists in today's matches, which will bring the event to a close.
This has even made it possible for the Head Referee, Patrick Kamuhia, who is from Kenya to tell the 'Daily News on Saturday' that now he can predict Tanzania will finish first as a team in the events today. "In the U-16 boys they (Tanzania) has two boy finalists and one girl. In the U-14 boys they have one, which is something very good for the country," he added.
Kamuhia, who is from Kenya said this at around two o'clock in the afternoon, which was before two more local boys had got through in the U-16 to make it a local affair today for this category. This means for this age group Tanzania is sure to get first and second places. By two o'clock in the boys singles U-14, local boy Emmanuel Mallya beat Radjabu Ntamba from Burundi 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 and Ernest Habiyambere from Rwanda beat Sheil Kotecha from Kenya 4-6, 6-1, 61. In the boys U-12 Abdoul Kaburu from Burundi beat Ryan Randiek from Kenya 6-2, 7-6 and a tie break three and in the other semi-final match Jonathan Mugisha from Burundi beat Keean Shah from Kenya 7-5, 7-6 and a tie break three.
Later on, by close of play, there was also the case that in the U-16 boys Tumaini Meshuko of Tanzania won against Burundian Saidi Nkurunziza, who was the winner for the last Zonal U-14. In the last singles game, which was the other U-16 pitting two local boys, Goodluck Mollel beat John Njau. Now for today's finals in the boys U-14 Emmanuel Mallya will play Ernest Habiyambere from Rwanda.
In the girls U-14, Mariam Mujawimana from Burundi will meet local girl Georgina Kaindoah and in the boys U-12 Abdoul Kaburu from Burundi plays Jonathan Mugisha from Burundi. In the girls U-16 Stephanie Mbaya meets her fellow Kenyan, Sofiya Gulam and in the boys for this age group the two local boys Tumaini Meshuko and Goodluck Mollel have to battle it out. In the girls U-12 Aisha Niyonkuru of Burundi meets Sneha Kotecha from Kenya. This is the first time in local tennis history members of the youth team have made their way to the finals.