BNP Paribas World Team Cup African Qualification: Meet The Top Players
The BNP Paribas World Team Cup African Qualification served off officially on Wednesday, 7 February, 2024, inside the tennis section of the National Stadium in Abuja, Nigeria’s Federal Capital.
Ten countries are currently participating in the five-day competition which will end on Sunday, 11 February, 2024.
The winners of the Men’s and Women’s events will be Africa’s flagbearers at the main BNP Paribas World Team Cup event holding from 7-12 May, 2024, in Turkey.
Nigeria Tennis Live decided to compile the names of the top players at this tournament, most of whom are top class players holding top world rankings, to enable our readers know the quality of talent on display at the annual event.
Alwande Sikhosana from South Africa is ranked 23 in the world, and has played 15 tournaments prior to this tournament and is the highest ranked African on the world rankings.
He is one of the African players who will be participating at the Paralympics in France in 2024, after winning the African Para Games in Ghana, in 2023.
Second-placed Lhaj Boukartacha from Morocco is ranked 44 in the world despite having played 21 competitions.
He remains one of the players to look out for in this competition, as Morocco keeps churning out fantastic tennis players in recent years.
Said Himam, another Moroccan, is the fourth-placed African on the world ranking and is rated 60 in the world with 19 tournaments under his belt.
His Moroccan counterpart, Fouad Boughnim, is the number six African on the world ranking with his world ranking 81, and he completes the Moroccan team to the World Team Cup African Qualifying event in Nigeria.
Nigeria’s Ukari Williams, rated 137 in the world, is among the top ranked African players at this year’s event.
He achieved this feat by playing only three competitions, and is the seventh highest ranked African player in the world.
Former US Open Star, Alex Adewale, comes in eighth with his 146 ranking spot in the world and having also played only three tournaments.
Caleb Odiyo from Kenya completes the top ten African players on the world ranking. He is rated 173 in the world and has played only two tournaments to reach this stage.
For the Women;
Kgothatso Montjane from South Africa leads the pack, and she is one of the most feared players in this competition.
She is ranked 8th in the world and nobody comes close in the entire continent, as she has 1545 points from 16 tournaments that she has participated in.
Coming second among the African women is Morocco’s Najwa Awane who is ranked 30 in the world. Without a doubt, she is another player to watch out for after securing her Paralympics ticket by winning the first-ever African Para Games in Accra, Ghana.
Another Morrocan, Samira Benichi, is the third on the list of the top ranked African players in the world. She is ranked 40th in the world and a finalist at the African Para Games in Ghana in 2023.
With her 148 points, Kafayat Omisore is the fifth highest African player on the world rankings. She is rated 75 in the world, and is one of the dreaded players at this tournament.
Mariska Venter from South Africa is world’s 87 ranked player and she is the sixth highest ranked African in the world.
She beat Nigeria’s Omisore in the Women’s Singles final at the recently concluded VEMP ITF Wheelchair Open event and is surely one to not be joked with.
Kenya’s Jane Ndenga is ranked 88 and is the top player from the East African country at the BNP Paribas event in Nigeria.
Her status as Africa’s number seven female player should not be overlooked, as her participation in six tournaments will definitely come with a level of experience.
Rehema Selemani from Tanzania is definitely one of the top players from the African continent, and with her world 89 ranking, she is the number eight African player in the world.
Tanzania is steadily rising in stock as far as tennis is concerned, and their performances in the coming years will give credence to this.
Kenya is one of the top destinations for African Qualification tournaments and having a number of solid players from their country is not a fluke.
One of their top players, Phoebe Masika, is rated ninth in Africa and 115 in the world, having competed in six tournaments.
Ghana completes the list of top 10 African players in world rankings as their star player, Stacy Mensah, keeps rising in stock.
She is rated 116 in the world, and will be fighting for the sole ticket alongside her colleague Bridget Martey, as Ghana’s only representatives at the BNP Paribas World Team Cup competition.