Dar es Salaam — Tanzania's fast-rising player Kanuti Alangwa cruised into the semi-finals of the ITF/Cat East African Junior Tennis Championships at the Dar es Salaam Gymkhana Club courts yesterday.
Alangwa stopped Burundian Salumu Mtahasa 6-3, 6-2 in the Under-16 boys' category to seal his place in the semi-finals. "I am happy with my qualification to the next stage, but I will have to up my game this week. Certainly, I will meet a tougher opponent in the semis, but I believe that I will be the one carrying the day,"Alangwa said. In other quarter-final results of the boys' Under-16 event, Derick Ominde of Kenya, who is the tournament's second seed, made it to the semi-finals after beating Joseph Junior 6-2,6-2.
Kael Shah of Kenya edged out Sudan's Ahmed Mandour 6-3, 6-2 to progress.
In other matches, Tanzanian Victoria Ndosi won her match 6-0, 6-0 over Yasmini Grand of Sudan while another Tanzanian, Rashid Ramadhan, beat Somalian Jafari Ahmed 6-0,6-1 and Joseph Lyza also from Tanzania progressed through a 6-0,6-1 win over Burundian Gatoto Akbar .
Tanzania coach Waziri Rajabu lauded his team, saying the lads were brilliant and looked forward to winning titles. "The boys are doing a wonderful job here. They work very hard on the court and produce desired results even though the competition is tough," he said. The International Tennis Federation (ITF) representative for East and Central Africa, Thierry Ntwali, said the championship was key to developing the game on the continent. Countries that fielded players in the championship are Burundi, Comoros, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Seychelles,Somalia and Sudan and hosts Tanzania.