Nigerian referee, Saidu Musa has stated that his experience at the ongoing Wimbledon Open Champions in England is making him aspire to move up further with the International Tennis Federation (ITF).
Musa, who is the highest ranked ITF official in West Africa -with bronze badge- is one of the few African officials at the SW19 and says he is already looking forward to more duties after taking charge of his first match on Wednesday.
|Mr. Musa Saidu, during one of the ITF tournaments in Nigeria Photo: Damilare Okunola|
“It is a privilege to be among the few African referees here (in Wimbledon),” he said.
“I have been involved in one match here and hopefully, I will take charge of one or two other games because it’s a dream for any referee to be on duty at the Wimbledon which most people consider as the most glamorous of all the four Grand Slams in tennis,” he added.
This is the second time that Niger state-born Musa will be officiating at the All England Club after his first experience in 2012.
|Mr. Saidu (2nd from right), alongside some Nigerian umpires during the Tombim ITF Futures in Abuja early this year Photo: Damilare Okunola|
After bagging a bronze badge referee in 2009, the Nigerian umpire has also officiated at the Olympics and the All African Games.
Nigeria Tennis Federation (NTF) President, Engr. Sani Ndanusa said, Musa being one of the few African officials at the tournament, speaks volume of the quality of Nigerian tennis officials.
“This is just a testimony by the ITF that Nigerian referees are as good as those from any part of the world. Arinola Issa is another referee who is moving up steadily and very soon we hope he will graduate to the bronze badge,” he declared.
Ndanusa promised that the NTF will provide more support for the nation’s officials to rise to the highest level in the sport.