Troy Zziwa, Julius Junior Nyaata, Allan Otto, Maggie Flavia Namaganda, Paula Awino and Eseza Muwanguzi depart this afternoon for Casablanca, Morocco to represent Uganda in the third edition of the African Junior Tennis Competition that run from September 2-7.
The team has three boys and three girls with local tennis legend, John Oduke coaching the boys while Edward Odockcen will watch over the girls.
U-12 Junior champion Namaganda and Zziwa who managed 60 singles points and 40 doubles points in the regional qualifiers held in March in Nairobi, Kenya will carry Uganda’s hopes after impressing in the qualifiers.
“We are positive the side can leave a mark in Morocco. Some of the players have been exposed to the big stage earlier in Nairobi and they did well, hopefully they can carry the form to Morroco,” said girls’ coach Odockcen.
The Junior Tennis Initiative has played a major role in making this a possibility as all players are products of the enterprise under different academies including Tennis for all, Kampala Club and Tena Tennis Academy which have offered platforms for youngsters to develop as players.
Team Uganda prepared for the championships by taking part in the International Schools of East and Southern Africa (ISSEA) Games on top of a week’s camp conducted by coaches Oduke and Odockcen at Lugogo Tennis Club.
Uganda Tennis Association (UTA) president Cedric Ndilima commended the game’s ability to strike a balance between both genders as the game continues to grow.
“We are glad that Uganda is producing some of the best talent in the region and we hope that this crop of players are the future of Ugandan tennis most especially the girls. We are striving for Gender Balance,” he said.
Uganda, East Africa’s sole representative in the girls’ category, will be up against hosts Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Madagascar, Benin and Ghana for continental honors.