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April 23, 2024
You are currently viewing Maiden veteran tennis tournament for South South opens in Benin
Two tennis rackets and balls leaned against the net.

Maiden veteran tennis tournament for South South opens in Benin

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By Usman Aliyu

A maiden tennis competition for veterans in South South Nigeria opened on Friday in Benin with more than 70 players.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event is being organised by Elo Jackson International, in collaboration with the Edo Tennis Association.

Declaring the event open, Joseph Osawaro, Chairman, Edo Tennis Association, described the tournament as the first of its kind in the whole of Sub-Sahara Africa.

The journey of the competition, he said, started in 2023 when Elo Jackson International organised a tennis tourney tagged “Edo 2023” for veterans in the state.

According to him, from the excitement, fun and camaraderie shared amongst the veteran players who participated in the edition, the sponsor decided to extend the tournament to the whole of the South-South region.

The chairman, who was represented by a member of the Edo Tennis Association board, Spatus Ujiomoh, applauded Dr Elo Jackson for single handedly sponsoring the tournament.

“Our tennis arena, nestled within the remodeled Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin, stands ready to witness remarkable matches and memorable moments.

“As we gather here, we honour the legacy of tennis veterans and their unwavering passion for the game.

“Beyond the competition, this tournament serves as a platform for physical exercise, rejuvenation and networking.

“It’s a testament to the enduring spirit of tennis enthusiasts who continue to inspire us,” he said.

Earlier, Dr Jackson who is bankrolling the tournament, said he was motivated by a similar competition for veteran badminton players in Africa.

He noted that except for Europe, nowhere was a tournament organised for veteran African tennis players.

“Last year, we were able to organise one for the whole of Edo State, hosted at the University of Benin and it was a huge success.

“The president of the Tennis Federation said we should extend it to the whole South South and that would make it merrier and better than what we are doing today.

“We have extended it to the whole South South and representatives from the six states are here.

“Tennis players anywhere are a family. We gave them a short notice and they are all here. They are all big men in their various businesses and career,” he said.

Jackson, who is the Vice Chairman of the Edo Tennis Association, said the competition would offer a platform for the veterans to recreate, relax, exercise and network.

If sponsorship is secured, the organiser said he planned to extend the tourney to veterans in the country. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)

Edited by Muhyideen Jimoh/Idris Abdulrahman

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