The press conference for the ITF Futures – Tombim Abuja Open, Dayak Tennis Championship, and GSL Open- held, Thursday, at the Tennis Complex of the National Stadium in Abuja.
In a memo released by the organizers of the futures event, the sponsors of the three-week long tournament clearly stated their motives and the desire to take the game of tennis to greater heights in the country.
In one of the statements, the organizers underlined the need to contribute to nation-building and contributing to the speedy development of Nigeria.
“It is the firm belief of the organizers that an event of this nature will contribute positively to building the structure of Nigerian tennis and the image of Nigeria internationally.”
“The organizers believe that the only way to move Nigeria forward is to stop sitting back and criticizing the government. Rather, everyone should get up and do their bit for the country.”
Also, a major aim, which was to get Nigerian players internationally ranked, has been considerably achieved.
“The sponsors are well aware of the difficulties and challenges faced by Nigerian players travelling around the world trying to collect ATP points. When this competition was started four years ago, the primary motive was to help Nigerian players gather vital points, and this was largely achieved when from not having a single Nigerian player that was ranked in the world, 5 Nigerian players became internationally ranked in one day.”
One major desire that must be fulfilled:
“The organizers are not interested in organizing a one-off competition; our target is to catch up with Egypt, which organizes over 40 ITF Futures each year. We are anxious to attract the private sector to invest in sports in Nigeria.”
The dream continues:
“The organizers of the competition are well aware of the difficulties faced by Nigerian players. Most Nigerian players do not have sponsors and can hardly travel out of Nigeria to compete. This is the reason why there are few Nigerian players with ATP points.”
“We hope that this competition will provide that opportunity, and that by the end of it, some of our players will pick up points that will help their career.”