The 2019 Lagos Open is over and it proved to be a spectacular one. So, we take a look back at two weeks of sizzling tennis at the Lagos Lawn Tennis Club, Onikan.
Here’s four things to takeaway from the fortnight:
Indians love Lagos
From the inaugural edition of the Lagos Open, Indian players have competed at the event and have enjoyed good success; from Meghha Vakaria in the women’s field in 2002 to Sania Mirza in 2004. Last year, Pranjala Yadlapalli won the women’s singles title in both legs and this year, another Indian, Riya Bhatia emerged women’s singles winner in the second leg.
Not just in the singles now, but also in the doubles disciplines, where Rutuja Bhosale and Prarthana Thombare made great runs alongside their respective partners. While Bhosale teamed up with Laura Pigossi of Brazil to claim the women’s doubles title in both legs this year, Prarthana Thombare finished as runner-up on both occasions with her partner, Sandra Samir of Egypt.
Thombare though was doubles champion in 2015 and 2016, partnering Julia Terziyska of Bulgaria and Valentini Grammatikopoulou of Greece respectively. The Indians love this event, don’t they?
Heineken and Lagos Open is a match made in heaven
Partners for the first time, Heineken and the Lagos Open delivered a special combo that attracted fans throughout the tournament. All fortnight, Heineken gave spectators special treats. Now, combine that with some interesting tennis action.
“We will continue this partnership we started with the Lagos Open this year and all stakeholders will have the cause to appreciate Heineken for this support in the years to come,” Senior Brand Manager of Heineken, Mfom Bassey, said. We are in for more goodness, no doubt.
Lagos Open gives birth to stars
Like it always has. This year, the Lagos Open again saw stars emerge. 18-year-old Sada Nahimana of Burundi won the biggest title of her career yet, when she claimed the women’s singles title in the first leg. The talented Burundian was making her first-ever appearance at the Lagos Open and what a debut it was for the teenager.
Also, Laura Pigossi, who reached the women’s singles final in the first leg before falling to Nahimana was making her debut. The Brazilian made a stunning run to the final but couldn’t get over the line. However, what she couldn’t achieve in the singles, she made up for it in the doubles, as she partnered with Rutuja Bhosale of India to claim back-to-back women’s doubles titles.
Oyinlomo Quadre is Nigeria’s closest to winning the Lagos Open
Oyinlomo Quadre is arguably Nigeria’s brightest youngster. At the two-week event in Onikan, the 16-year-old’s talent was there for all to see as she contested in both legs. In the first leg she made the round of 16, and then went one better in the second leg to reach the quarter-finals, where she lost to the more experienced Valeriya Strakhova of Ukraine in three sets. Her quarter-final run in the second leg is the farthest any Nigerian has gone since Sylvester Emmanuel and Clifford Enosoregbe’s quarterfinal-run in 2016.
With her talent and impressive gameplay, it won’t be long before the Nigerian emerges winner at the prestigious event.