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Babalola, Lawal To Clash In Semi Final

Damilare Okunola
Either of Nigeria’s top two tennis players, Shehu Lawal and Abdulmumuni Babalola will not play in the final of Men’s Singles event of this year’s Dala Hard Court Tennis Championship taking place in Kano.
Both players will play against each other in one of the semi final matches scheduled for Friday morning.
While Lawal dumped out Samuel Omoile, 7-6 (4),6-2 in the quarter final match played Thursday, Babalola walloped Ekanem Etim, 6-3,6-3 to set up a re-match of last year’s final.

Shehu Lawal: semi-final showdown with Babalola

Shehu Lawal: semi-final showdown with Babalola

Lawal said that he will not allow a repeat of last year’s final where he fell to Babalola as he told Naija Tennis Special that he really wants to win this time because he has set his sight on carting home N800,000 prize money for the Men’s Singles winner.
“I won’t allow a repeat of last year’s competition when I lost to Babalola in the final. My target this year is to play in the final.

 Abdulmumin Babalola in action

Abdulmumin Babalola in action

“Don’t forget that we are approaching December and you know that I am a married man now, so I really need to play for the money and move into the final,” Lawal said.
In the other Men’s Singles semi final match, Clifford Enosoregbe will lock horns with Henry Atseye in what appears to be a repeat of this year’s Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN Open final where Atseye won the match after Enosoregbe had picked up a thigh injury.
In the men’s doubles event, the duo of Samuel Omoile and Nonso Madueke defeated the pair of Shehu Lawal and Clifford Enosoregbe, 6-4,4-6,10-7 to set up a final clash with Abdulmumuni Babalola and Taiwo Owolabi who crushed Bikom Albert and Tyav Tyolumum in straight set of 6-3, 6-0.
Meanwhile, an upset was recorded in the Women’s Singles event, when teenage sensation, Sarah Adegoke, humiliated number two seed Ronke Akingbade, 6-2,6-1 in the semi final match to set up a final clash against current number one female player, Samuel Blessing who beat Kienka Liola 6-3,6-1 in the other semi final match played Thursday.
The Women’s Singles final match will be played Friday morning as well as the men’s doubles event, while the final of the Men’s Singles is fixed for Saturday.

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