Nigeria Tennis Live


Meet Philips Abayomi, Nigeria’s New Kid On The Bloc (Photo)

The ongoing Zenith Bank Next Gen Tennis Masters has thrown open another junior tennis star who is expected to dominate Nigerian tennis in the coming years. His name, Phillips Abayomi.

Nigerian Tennis Live gathered that the player became the talk of spectators after some ingenious performances at the junior tennis masters which is being played at the tennis section of the National Stadium, Surulere.

“A new tennis star is born!” That was the exclamation of Uzonna Izugbokwe, director of the Luik Recreation Club – a private tennis club in Lekki Lagos – after Abayomi overwhelmed Michael Ayoola in the second semifinals of the tournament, a sentiment which other spectators shared as well.

Phillips Abayomi is definitely one player to watch out for in the coming years.

Abayomi had never reached the semifinal of any ITA Junior Circuit tournament because of his erratic power game, but he appeared to have mastered the art of power play and improved his backhand to the amazement of his opponents.

The 16 year-old who kept a clean slate in the round robin, eliminating Michael Oshewa the National 18s champion and pre-tournament favourite, took a 5-0 lead before Ayoola got on the score board. Both players thereafter held serve until the end when Ayoola’s  forehand volley into the net gave Abayomi his first tournament finals.

Izugbokwe further stated: “This is a player to watch.

“If he can get his backhand to be half as good as his forehand we should have a world star in our hands.”

According to his coach, Ifeanyi Onyenwenu, who was extremely proud of his player, the performances being hailed are a result of intense hard work and patience over the years.

He said: “You know, when we’re in training, and you’re instructing some of the players, it appears like you’re doing too much. But when they start winning, they forget all those pains.

“What you’re seeing here today, is a result of hard work and intense dedication on the part of both the players and myself. I’m not surprised at all, I can only expect to see him excel more.”

Abayomi will meet Port Harcourt based Godgift Timibra who won a see-saw battle with Tochukwu Ezeh from the Onitsha Club 9-5.

The girls’ final will be between  Oyin Quadre and Toyin Asogba. Quadre was ruthless in her 9-0 victory over Rebecca Ekpeyong from Port Harcourt while Asogba weathered a spirited fight back from Favour Moses, who had trailed 2-5, to win 9-8 with a tiebreak decider.

The finals which will feature the girls and boys finals will take place at the same venue starting 10 am on Saturday, 28 April.


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