The 2016 National Wheelchair Ranking Tournament will serve off today at the National Stadium, Lagos with no fewer than 40 players participating.
Nigeria’s wheelchair tennis Head Coach, Frank Tarmena, disclosed that the players that have already registered will represent about 20 states. He expressed optimism that more players will register for the tournament before it gets underway.
“Registration so far has been average because we are expecting a large number of participants due to the importance of the tournament. Some few more states have notify us that they are on their way to Lagos and because of this we have decided not to extend registration till Thursday morning after which we will commence the draws,” he stated.
Tarmena, who is an ITF Instructor on wheelchair tennis, stated that the players enthusiastic about the tournament as they hope to get a better ranking which will automatically earned them places into the main draw of big tournaments like the Central Bank of Nigeria Open which guarantees them monetary prizes.
He revealed that the duo of Alex Adewale and Kafayat Omisore will be the top seeds for the men and women chart which will be competed for in round of 32. The quad division, he added, will feature about 10-12 players.
Adewale who represented Nigeria at the London 2012 Paralympics is the reigning CBN Open champion while Omisore, who was a finalist in the women’s singles, will head the women’s chart due to the absence of Foluke Shittu, who is currently abroad.
The likes of Wasiu Yusuf, who represented Nigeria at the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games, Jude Uwaize, Lateef Shodipo are also among the favourites to shoot into the top of the ranking for the men’s division while Tosin Dawodu and Remi Basanya also look good to push their way to the top of the ladder board.