Depth of talent help young KZN players win tournament

2009-07-13 00:00

THE KwaZulu-Natal team won the SA Primary Schools’ tennis tournament for the third year in a row at a packed Kershaw Park yesterday.

Five of the players in the victorious KZN team, Zandi Powell, Hannah Power, Jahnara Pillay, Mudiwa Llobell and Tessa van der Merwe, play for Braaiketts Tennis Club in Pietermaritzburg.

Llobell, Pillay and Powell were all selected for the SA Primary Schools’ team to tour overseas later this year.

It must be said, though, that several other KZN players were extremely unfortunate not to be included among the 20 boys and 20 girls in the national team — or at least among the non-travelling reserves.

KZN’s narrow 45 points to 37 win in a very tight final was built around the superior depth they had over fellow finalists Western Province.

The KZN boys’ number one and two players both lost to their WP counterparts in the singles matches, as did the top three KZN girls. However, the KZN numbers three, four, five and six boys won their singles matches, as did the KZN numbers four, five and six girls. And in the doubles matches, the KZN boys won two of the three encounters, as did the girls.

The KZN Primary Schools’ tennis success is testimony to the thriving junior tennis programmes being run in Pietermaritzburg and Durban, and the various coaches of the team’s players all deserve a pat on the back for their unstinting efforts.

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