By John Egbokhan
The International Tennis Federation (ITF) has urged theNigeria Tennis Federation (NTF) to bid for the hosting right of the 2011 African Junior Tennis Championship at the newly constructed National Tennis Centre in Abuja, equipped with no fewer than 17 courts.
Fresh from hosting the 2010 edition of Africaâ€™s premium junior tennis competition, which was unanimously declared a huge success by the ITF President, Francesco Ricchi Bitti, who attended the Annual General Meeting of CAT, held during the course of the 14 days long event,
Sports Vanguard learnt yesterday that the ITF, impressed with the state of the facilities in Abuja, told the President of the NTF, Sani Ndanusa, that the apex ruling tennis body would be more than happy to partner with the latter for a smooth organisation of next yearâ€™s event.
It was gathered from a reliable source that the ITF Development Officer, Dave Riley, who wrote a latter of appreciation to the NTF for a successful staging of the 2010 event, which attracted players from over 35 African countries, urged the Nigerian authorities to seriously consider bidding to stage the next edition.
â€œThe ITF president and the president of the Confederation of African Tennis, were quite impressed with the facilities that were provided by Nigeria for the staging of the 2010 African Junior Tennis Championship and feel that Nigeria should bid to host the next edition, going by the feelers they got from most of the players, who said that they would be delighted to come back to Abuja next year.
â€œIt was based on the aforesaid that the ITF Development Officer, urged Nigeria to seriously consider bidding to host the next event because they facilities are already in place in Abuja, while other issues likes logistics would be thrashed out by both parties, before the serve off of the Championshipâ€, which is open to only top flight African players in the junior cadre.
It was learnt that Nigeria has about two months to signify its intention to host, which is to be backed by guarantees.