The ITF/CAT Circuit Junior De L’Afrique De L’Ouest – a Grade 5 hard-court event – in Lome, Togo begins on Monday, 2 September to 7 September at the AAT Club & Stade Omnisports Eyadema in Lome.
Four Nigerians are in main draw action, with Abayomi Philips, Emmanuel Jebutu and Joshua Aji competing in the boy’s singles event, while Oiza Yakubu battles it out in the girl’s singles category.
Abayomi Philips and Joshua Aji competed at the GTFLifetime Athletic Open in Accra, Ghana a week ago, with the former going all the way to clinch the title, while Aji bowed out in the second round. Aji, who has received a first-round bye here, will be looking to get off to a good start and put together a better week, when he takes to court against Jaishvin Sidana of India in the second round on Tuesday.
Philips, meanwhile, comes into the event riding a wave of confidence, having powered to the GTFLifetime Open title last week, and will now try to claim back-to-back titles on the ITF Junior Circuit. The 9th seed, who also got a first-round bye, has Boris Kouadio of Ivory Coast to contend with in the second round on Monday.
15-year-old Emmanuel Jebutu is competing in his first ITF Junior event this year and will hope to make it a remarkable one. Jebutu has been solid in junior tournaments in Nigeria and made a final showing at the Zenith Bank ‘NextGen’ Masters in June. Can he translate that form onto the ITF Circuit? The youngster, who also got a bye in the first round, takes on Richard Okine of Ghana, the 13th seed, in the second round on Monday.
In the girl’s field, Oiza Yakubu, who reached the quarter-finals of the GTFLifetime Open in Ghana last week, will, on Monday, begin her campaign for top honours in Lome against Aida Garba of Benin, who’s competing in her maiden event on the ITF Junior Circuit.