ITF JUNIOR CIRCUIT
Nigeria’s Barakat Quadri, sunday, recorded one of the most fairy-tale successes in ITF junior tennis by winning the girl’s singles title at the 2016 ITF West/Central Africa 18 & Under Tennis Circuit in Cotonou, Benin Republic.
Quadri defeated Carmine Becoude, the third seed from Benin 6-0, 6-2 to emerge the new queen of junior tennis in the region as Nigeria, with two gold medals, emerged overall winners of the tournament which had players from seven African countries as well as India, Great Britain, Poland, Portugal and Malaysia.
Qiadri,14, was making her debut at the under 18 level and as such was not seeded as she had no ranking points. However, the year-long training she had at the ITF Development Center in Morocco, duly reflected in her performance at the six-day tournament, as she brushed aside all her opponents which also includes a 6-2, 6-1 triumph over number one seed, Marie Ange Adomon of Cote d’Ivoire in the semifinal.
Prior to her win over Adomon, she was ruthless in her 6-0, 6-0 quarterfinal crushing of fellow Nigerian, Angel Mcleod, the fourth seed, to send shivers down the spines of her rivals.
Moments after her triumph over McLeod, whom she also defeated in their last competitive meeting at the 2015 MP Tiger Tennis Tournament in Lagos, she paired Toyin Asogba to win the doubles by beating the combination of Becoude and India’s Trisha Vinod 6-4, 7-6.
A delirious Quadri dedicated the title to her parents, Amine Ben Makhlouf, who is the Director of the ITF Centre in Morocco and the Nigeria Tennis Federation.
Nigeria’s coach Mohammed Ubale was equally elated describing Quadri’s feat as one Nice of the most memorable in Nigeria’s junior tennis in recent years.
“This is one of the greatest moment for junior tennis in Nigeria. Barakat was just too good. She played very well against all of her opponents who are older. No doubt she has a very bright future in tennis.”
Team Nigeria, made up 15 players – four girls and eleven boys – are scheduled to arrive Lome, Togo later on Sunday in continuation of the circuit which is an ITF Grade 4 tournament.