4th October, 2011
Head coach of the Nigeria Tennis Federation, NTF, Rotimi Akinloye, has said it would be very difficult if not impossible for any Nigerian player to win this yearâ€™s Governorâ€™s Cup.
Akinloye disclosed this to TennisSpecial while commenting on the prospect of the game as the nation celebrated her 51st Independence anniversary.
He said it would be a great delight to see Nigerian players winning the tourney but they lack the prowess to achieve the feat.
â€œLetâ€™s be frank with ourselves, our players are not fit enough to win the tourney. It would be a great joy for me to see one of our players win the trophy, but it beyond training for a particular tournament for a few weeks,â€ he said.
Akinloye said the dearth of tournament is the canker worm killing the game in the country. He said Nigerian players are always idle after major tournaments making it difficult for them to compete at the peak of the game.
â€œNigerian players can not compete with most of these international players because of lack of tournament. The more you play in competition the better you are as a player. Where would they be after the Governorâ€™s Cup? They would be idle until there is another major tourney in the country,â€ he said.
Akinloye expressed displeasure over the Nigerian players low ranking in the International Tennis Federation, ITF, which he said is caused by their absence in most of the international tourneys.
â€œThe top Nigerian player on the ITF ranking is ranked 1015. This is because of the absence of our players at the international tourneys,â€ he said.
He, therefore, charged corporate bodies to support the game by sponsoring competitions in the country