Wheelchair tennis players in Nigeria have appealed to Engr. Dayo Akindoju, the president of the Nigeria Tennis Federation (NTF), to help them get tournaments that will ensure they participate in the next World Team Cup.
The players who preferred anonymity, in separate chats with Nigerian Tennis Live, lamented the fact that they no longer have any tournament to participate in to boost their confidence on the courts let alone go for such international competitions.
Nigerian players have in recent past, made it to the World Team Cup on at least two-three occasions and even though they did not perform as well as they would have loved to, they made their presence known each year they got to the tournament.
Engr. Akindoju had promised the players, on resumption to office, that the players remain part of his administration’s plans and that they would feature regularly in national tournaments.
|Coach Frank Termena flanked by Alex Adewale and Wasiu Yusuf during ne of the last performances of Team Nigeria at the World Team Cup where the country has not made any appearance for a while.|
The players are now appealing to the president to make his promise come true in the new year, as they believe the new administration will also take into consideration their plights over the years.
One of the players who preferred anonymity, said: “We are really demoralized by the absence of tournaments for wheelchair players in the country, it even looks like we are no longer existing in the sport.
“We appeal to the NTF President to help us out this year, we really need to be part of the process so that we can get better in the sport.”
Another player expressed his frustration, noting that the disabled players have been able to qualify the country for the World Team Cup and produce the number one player on the continent at the time when there was continuity in their participation in tournaments.
“Yet, we are the ones who are being neglected when it comes to organization of tournaments in our federation.
“This is something we are appealing to the Nigeria Tennis Federation to correct in due time because we need to get back to the level we used to be before in the sport,” the disabled athlete told Nigerian Tennis Special correspondent in confidence.