6-time champion, Abdulmumin Babalola says tying David Imonitie’s long-standing record of seven CBN Open titles is not all he’s concerned about, noting that playing well is what he’s focused on.
Babalola, who won his 6th title in 2017, when he defeated Joseph Imeh in the final, is now one match win away from a record-equalling 7th CBN Open title. He had the chance to claim it last year, but was edged in three sets by Sylvester Emmanuel in the final.
Babalola and Emmanuel will again do battle for the title, with another chance presenting itself. But the 34-year-old says he’s not pursuing any record.
“I’m in a situation that I’m not competing with anybody,” he said. “I’m just going in there to do my normal thing, if it comes out good, fine. I don’t want to put pressure on myself.
“All I know is that I have to sit tight to win my title and if I play well, I’d grab it. All I have to do is to be cool headed, I’m not competing like I want to tie [the record] by all means.
“It’s a thing of joy if I win [on Saturday]. Nevertheless I’m not pursuing any record for now, I just want to do my thing, to play good tennis. I need to let people see the good tennis in me.”
Babalola won his first CBN Open title in 2002. On Saturday, he takes on 21-year-old Sylvester Emmanuel for another.
The men’s final is live on Centre Court at the National Tennis Centre in Abuja from 1:00pm.