Activities marking the 41st edition of the Central Bank of Nigeria Senior Tennis Tournament have commenced at the tennis courts of the Package ‘B’ of the National Stadium in Abuja and will run till Saturday June 29, 2019.
Director, Corporate Communications Department, Central Bank of Nigeria, Isaac Okorafor said that the tournament is coming back to the Federal Capital city for the successive year due to the success of the last edition there.
This he said prompted the management of the apex bank into making a return by approving the staging of the 2019 edition of the CBN Senior tennis which is the 41st in the series in Abuja.
Okorafor reaffirmed the objective of the annual CBN hard court Senior Tennis Championship which is to discover talents that could represent Nigeria at major international competitions like the Olympics Games, Commonwealth Games, All Africa Games and even the World Championships among others.
He added that the tournament would also help to better the global ranking of Nigeria players with the International Tennis Federation (ITF) as well as create channels for the development of the sport in the domestic scene for both the youth and the physically challenged.
According to him, those who have played in the tournament in the past have gone ahead to wear the green-white-green colours of Nigeria at various international championships where they competed favourably with the rest of world.
The CBN director prayed that in no distant time, products of the CBN Tennis would surpass the ranking of those predecessors like Nduka Odizor who reached his highest ATP ranking of 52 in the world in June 1984.
Okorafor reassured tennis stakeholders that the CBN will continue to invest in Nigerian youth through sports as part of the apex bank’s social responsibilities.
He pointed at the CBN Junior Tennis championship held last month at the Tafawa Balewa Square, Race Course Lagos which featured U-10 to 18 boys and girls categories as one of such drive to develop the youths.
For the 2019 CBN Senior Tennis, action will be in men and women’s singles, men and women’s doubles as well as the wheelchair categories.
The men and women’s singles events would be drawn in Round of 64 chat format while the men and women’s doubles would observe Round of 32 chat actions.
Winners of both the men and women’s singles events will smile home with N700,000 each in addition to giant trophies while runners-up, will receive N500, 000 each for their effort.
Sponsors of the championship also have prize money set aside for other winners in the singles’ events, men and women’s doubles as well as the wheel chair categories.