SEEDS AND DRAW ANNOUNCED FOR THE AIRPORTS COMPANY SOUTH AFRICA PRETORIA OPEN
The seeds and draw for next week’s Airports Company South Africa Pretoria Open, part of the International Tennis Federation (ITF) UNIQLO Wheelchair Tennis Tour were announced on Saturday. The tournament, a Futures event, will be staged in Pretoria at the Rietondale Tennis Club from Sunday 28 June with the finals scheduled for Wednesday 1 July.
In the absence of the top three South African players, Kgothatso Montjane, Evans Maripa and Lucas Sithole who can’t play due to a high ranking it is left to Leon Els, Mariska Venter and Bongani Dlamini to run amok and stop any visitors’ hopes of running away with the points during the event.
The tourney has attracted over ten foreigners who hails as far abroad Australia, Austria, France, Ghana, Israel, Kenya, Romania and Zimbabwe.
Spearheading the men’s singles will be Leon Els, the South African No. 2 and top seed will be defending his title. Els will be looking to retain his crown but he will be made to work hard by Australia’s Oh-Chee Keegan, Nico Langmann from Austria, Israel's Asi Stokol and Zimbabwe's Nyasha Mharakurwa. The 27-year old will face Letsoalo Geoffrey in his opener.
Former world no.1 junior Mariska Venter is the top seed for the women’s event. Venter, the South African no.2 who represented the country at the recent prestigious BNP Paribas World Team Cup in Turkey will face stiff competition from compatriots French-lady Christine Schoenn who is no stranger to the country, Thando Hlatswayo and Rose van der Meer who have made her work hard to take the crown in previous years. Venter has a bye in round one and will wait in round two for the winner of the match between Ndenga Jane (KEN) vs Hlatswayo Nosipho (RSA).
In the quads division, Bongani Dlamini, the country’s number two quad player and top seed in the tournament will be defending his title at this year’s event in a bit to gain points to qualify for next year's Paralympic Games in Rio. Dlamini has a bye on the opening day and will go head to head against the winner of the all South African clash between Ramuageli Lutendo vs Mahlanya Michael.
In the junior division, the country's top ranked players Alwande Skhosana and Nokwanda Hlongwane will take to the courts to solidify their positions among the top five juniors in the world.
Each tournament will include singles and doubles draws for men, women, quads and juniors.
Play is scheduled to start at 09h00 each day but subject to change.
Wheelchair Tennis South Africa and Airports Company South Africa Partnership:
The Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) is the official sponsor of Wheelchair Tennis South Africa and the sport of wheelchair tennis. Airports Company South Africa has contributed no less than R36-million to date and has committed to a continued investment in the sport as its flagship Corporate Social Investment programme.