Nigeria endured a torrid time on Thursday at the 2017 ITF/CAT Junior Tennis championships holding in Johannesburg, South Africa as the boys’ teams succumbed to defeat in their doubles matches at the event featuring over 100 players from about 30 countries.
In the boys’ 16 and under, Michael Osewa and Michael Ayoola lost 7-5, 6-2 to South African Codie Van Schalkwyk and Damien Laporte of the Seychelles.
The match saw Osewa, who is the most-experienced Nigerian player at the tournament, facing Laporte for the first time after the player from the Indian Ocean Island triumphed in the final of the boys’ 14 and under last year.
Van Schalkwyk is the third seed in the singles and he justified his rating by influencing the outcome of the match hitting most of the winners in the first round encounter.
In the boy’s 14 and under, David Dawariye and Mathew Abamu were put through a more harrowing experience as they threw away a 6-3 first set win against Zimbabwean duo of Taona Mhwandagara and Ethnan Sibanda, who rallied to win the second set 6-3 and then followed it with a 10-2 super tie-break win. Abamu had claimed the scalp of Mhwandagara in the singles on Monday but met him on a different level this time around.
Marylove Edward is the only Nigerian left in the doubles and she is paired with Lorie Lemongo of Cameroun due to the absence of Oyinlomo Barakat Quadri as a result of injury.
The double-forehand double backhand player and her partner are drawn bye in the first round and will face the partnership of Claire Maschsa and Rufaro Magarira, who triumphed 6-2, 3-6, 10-7 over Angela Okutoyi and Alicia Owegi of Kenya.
The Nigerians had looked forward to a very rewarding outing in the ITF/CAT Junior Tennis. As the curtain draw to a close, they may still rescue some great results.