22nd October, 2010
Boy Westerhof of Holland was a delight to watch when he defeated Sunday Emmanuel ofÂ Nigeria 7-5, 6-4 in the first round of the Main Draws at the ongoing Governorâ€™s CupÂ Lagos Tennis Championship. Westerhof, who won the Futures 1 in the 2008 edition ofÂ the ITF approved tournament,lost yesterday’s match to Weintraub Amir of Israel. HeÂ Â told SUNDAY AKINTOYE at theÂ Lagos Lawn Tennis Club, Onikan that though, he is outÂ of the Futures 1, but his ultimate target is to win something in the second leg ofÂ the competition
How would you rate your performance against Nigerian player, Sunday Emmanuel?
It was a good performance. Emmanuel was a good player no doubt. You can see how heÂ stretched me in the first set of the game. He almost defeated me. If he continuesÂ that way, he would be a player to watch out for in the future. Anyway, weÂ played aÂ good game, but I was better than him.
That must be your best performance in this year’s tourney.
My best is yet to come. I take each game as it comes. You saw my game with Clifford,Â another Nigerian player, where I beat him 6-3,6-0. My target is to remain focus butÂ it’s a bit difficult to repeat the feat of 2008 edition, where I won one of theÂ Futures. I have a lot of challenges ahead of me.
Then Thursday’s match, you won the first set 6-4 but finally lost 2-6, 4-6 to Amir.Â How do you feel about that?
Well, it was a tough game but Amir was better and deserve to move ahead. I stillÂ have the Futures 2 to win something.
Since you arrived the country, how have you been enjoying yourself?
I must confess, I’m having a good time in Nigeria. I am happy to be in Lagos again.Â The people here are friendly and accommodating. From my interaction with some of theÂ players, I can see that the local players have the potentials to be great in tennis,Â Â if there is an enabling environment.
After this championship, what’s next for you?
To improve myself in tennis, one must featureÂ regularly inÂ tournaments both withinÂ and outside his country. This will improve my rating on world ranking and get theÂ necessary exposure. Iâ€™m in Lagos for the Governorâ€™s Cup and after this competition,Â Iâ€™m going to Turkey for another competition.