NCC Tennis League Team Ogun, Tombim battle for semifinals
Four teams, two in each group, are in pole position for semifinal tickets of the on-going NCC Tennis League at the conclusion of the second set of round robin matches last weekend in Abeokuta.
Team Ogun lead the White group following their win over Team FCT last weekend. Both teams went into the tie without their leading players who were abroad for some tournaments. FCT missed the services of former national champion, Blessing Samuel, who is their leading female player, while Team Ogun coped without Joseph Imeh.
In the race for the semifinal tickets, Team Ogun, which beat CBN Futures in their first tie, will take on Team Kalotari from August 14 to August 16 at the Port Harcourt Club. Team Kalotari had notched wins against Team FCT and the Kaduna-based CBN Features in their first two matches.
The other two teams from the Blue Group are Team Tombim, which has two wins from two matches against Team Delta and Team Anambra, and Team Civil Defence, which also beat the same teams.
Team Tombim parading the best ATP ranked players in Moses Michael and Christian Paul will square up against the Civil Defence team, which has the top nationally ranked players in Clifford Enosoregbe, Abdulmumuni Babalola, Shehu Lawal and Christie Agugbom at the Abuja National Stadium from August 21 to Sunday August 23. This eagerly anticipated final round robin match in the Blue Group is expected to be the most explosive in the phase.
“We are sending our best ITF certified umpires to that match and we hope we shall get a full house of spectators to appreciate the players over those two days. I know some tennis buffs in Lagos and Port Harcourt, who have booked their tickets to Abuja for the match,” Godwin Kienka, director of the International Tennis Academy, organisers of the competition said.
The NCC Tennis League is offering N5 million to the winning team, N3 million to the runner-up, N2 million to the third place and N1 million to the fourth place. It has also taken top level tennis to cities like Kaduna, Asaba, Onitsha and Abeokuta, which had not hosted such events in decades.