Team Nigeria emerged overall winners of the 2016 ITF West/Central Africa U-18 Circuit, which ended in Lome, Togo, over the weekend. Nigeria topped the medals’ log with four gold and a silver medal, edging Korea who came second with four gold medals.
Egypt and France placed joint third, with one gold and one silver each, while USA and Cote d’Ivoire bagged a gold each to finish joint fourth in the 19-day circuit.
Oyinlomo Barakat Quadri was the stand-out player in the three-leg circuit which served off on September 6 in Cotonou, Benin. The 13-year-old debutante won a total of four gold and a silver medal which notably include an unprecedented three straight girls’ singles titles.
At the final of the third-leg of the world-ranking tournament which attracted over 80 players from Africa, Europe, Asia and North America, Barakat – who started with the Aces Tennis Academy in Lagos – defeated Marion Karine Job of France 6-3, 6-3 at the Stade Omnisports to complete her feat.
“We are very happy with the achievement of Barakat who the ITF identified as one of the best junior players in Africa, going by the scholarship she was offered last year. The Nigeria Tennis Federation has focused more on junior tennis in recent years and that is why we are now among the top teams in Africa,” Nigeria Tennis Federation (NTF) president, Sani Ndanusa, said.
She had twice defeated Carmine Becoude of Benin Republic 6-0, 6-2 and 6-2, 6-2 in the final, to win the singles in the first two legs which took place in Cotonou and Lome.
She paired her Aces Tennis Academy team-mate Toyin Asogba to win one doubles title, while she also partnered Angel Mcleod to win silver in the doubles.