Glamour returns to SportsCity, as 37th CBN Tennis Open serves off
THE usual thrill associated with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Senior Tennis Open is expected to return to the Sports City (National Stadium, Lagos), as the 37th edition of the competition serves off today.
So far, over 200 tennis players from all parts of the federation have indicated interest in the championship, but the number is expected to rise before the close of registration today.
The championship will run from May 14 to 23. Speaking in Lagos yesterday, the Director, Corporate Communications Department of CBN, Ibrahim Mu’Azu, represented by the Branch Controller, CBN, Lagos, James Iyare, disclosed that this year’s edition would serve as the platform for the selection of players that will fly the country’s flag in the Commonwealth Youth Games in Samoa, and the All Africa Games in Congo Brazzaville.
As it was in 2014, Iyare stated that the total prize money for this year’s edition is N14, 436, 000.00. “The prize money for the winners in the men’s and Ladies’ is N700,000 each, while the runners-up will pocket N500,000 each,” he said.
Iyare also stated yesterday that the Wheelchair Tennis, which was introduced into the championship last year, has come to stay.
The winners in both male and female categories in the Wheelchair tennis will go home with N250,000, while the runners-up will pocket N200,000.
Iyare stated that CBN was satisfied with the performance of the Wheelchair tennis players in Kenya last year, where they qualified for the World Cup held in the Netherlands. Also speaking yesterday, the first vice chairman of the Nigeria Tennis Federation, Yemi Owoseni, who represented the President of the Federation, Sani Ndanusa, praised CBN for its contribution to the growth of tennis in the country.
Owoseni, who is also the Chairman of Ekiti Tennis Association and the Permanent Secretary of the State Pensions’ Commission, hinted that Abulmumuni Babalola is one of the players seeded in this year’s edition of the CBN Tennis Championship.
The CBN tennis has been running since its inception in 1979, producing such great players as David Imonitie, Veronica Oyibokia, Sunday Maku, Sadiq Abdullahi, Remi Osho and Clara Usofa.