242 entries for Harare Jnr Open

HARARE - At least 242 fledging tennis stars will battle for honours in the Arenal Harare Wimbledon Tennis Junior Open that begins today across three venues in Harare.

The four-day tournament will play host to juniors ranging from Under-10, Under-12, Under-14, Under-16 to the Under-18 category.

St Georges, Harare Sports Club and Old Hararians Sports Clubs have been set to stage the tournament that has attracted some of the country’s top junior seeds.

The Under-18 boys section promises to provide a fiery battle with top seed Lucca Picci likely to be the leading light in that category.

According to the form book, Picci should face stern competition from Mantas Academy based rising tennis star Michael Gutu.

Gutu will be high on confidence after finishing as a semi-finalist at the Manicaland Open and Mantas Open tournaments.

Rufaro Chirewa, ranked 907 on the ITF Under-18 rankings, is favorite to scoop the Under-18 girls’ category.

Chirewa will however have to wade off the competition of Zarah Finnigan, ranked 1205 on the ITF Under-18 standings, if she entertains any hopes of bagging the junior tennis championship.

Chirewa and Finnigan recently represented Zimbabwe at the recently held African Junior Championships in Morocco and they will be hoping that experience will come to the fore when they take to the court this weekend.

Latifah Yasina who also represented Zimbabwe during their trip to Morrocco is a wild card in the Under-18 girls’ category.

Finnigan is hoping to use the Arenal Harare Wimbledon Tennis Junior Open to keep her season  going.

“It’s a full draw this time. Recently we have been lacking competitions because of the sponsorship issues,” she said.

“We have been only getting like one good game in, so this is encouraging. I’m expecting quite a good competition.

“I was in Kenya for three weeks played on clay then I went to Morocco for two weeks and I should be leaving next week Wednesday for Namibia.”


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