Sada Nahimana, today, became the first African since Chanelle Scheepers in 2007 to win the women’s singles title at the Lagos Open, following a determined three-set victory over 6th seed Laura Pigossi of Brazil.
In her debut appearance at the event, the unseeded Burundian, who’s Africa’s No. 1 junior, produced a spirited performance to register a 2-6, 6-4, 6-3 victory in the final and claim her first ITF World Tour title.
Nahimana and Pigossi had not dropped a set en route to the final, but it was former who gave first; Pigossi breaking thrice in the opening set to take it. Both women would keep things tight in the second set, until Nahimana finally carved out the decisive break in the tenth game to level matters and force a decider.
The 18-year-old would carry the momentum into the third set, never letting her opponent get on top. She opened up a 3-1 lead early. But Pigossi drew level for 3-3. The Burundian however broke in the eight game for 5-3 and then, held to love in the ninth before lifting her hands in glory.
Sada Nahimana secures her very 1st ITF singles title at the 3rd time of trying!
The Burundian defeats Laura Pigossi 2-6, 6-4, 6-3.
— Lagos Open (@LagosOpenTennis) October 14, 2019
It’s been a remarkable week for the 18-year-old who, prior to this event, had lost in back-to-back finals on the ITF World Tour (both at the W15 Nairobi in Kenya). Now $3,000 richer, Nahimana turns her attention to the second week, which is already underway at the Lagos Lawn Tennis Club, Onikan.
Meanwhile, Laura Pigossi did brilliantly in the women’s doubles final in partnership with India’s Rutuja Bhosale.
The duo rallied impressively from a set down to beat the Egyptian-Indian pair of Sandra Samir and Prarthana Thombare 4-6, 6-4, 10-7 and claim the women’s doubles title. Their first on the ITF World Tennis Tour as a pair.