THE International Tennis Federation (ITF) J100 tournament took off Tuesday at Harare Sports Club with mixed fortunes for local players in the singles and doubles matches.
In the boys’ singles Ronan Mtisi pulled through to the second round when he defeated South Africa’s Tshepang Maisela 6-3, 5-7, 7-5 in a match that had to be decided in the third set.
He was the only Zimbabwean player from yesterday’s singles who managed to advance to today’s second round.
In the girls’ category, Tinotenda Chipfakacha beat Riya Matharoo from India 7-5, 1-6, 6-2 while Zvikomborero Mtutu overcame Melissa Mwakha of Kenya 3-6, 7-5, 6-3 to proceed to the second round.
They join the likes of third seed Sasha Chimedza and Tadiwanashe Mauchi seeded eighth, who are some of the leading local players that had byes in the first round.
Chimedza reached the girls’ singles final while Mauchi reached the doubles final and the singles quarterfinals in J60 held last week.
In other matches featuring Zimbabwean players yesterday, Tendai Chihowa lost 6-1, 6-0 to John Bothma of South Africa while Tafara Nhokwara went down to Ved Shetty 6-1, 6-4.
Felix Tazvivinga lost to Yoan Naydenov 7-6 (3), 6-2 and Tinaye Tongoona was dismissed 6-0, 6-0 by Maciej Zarebski of Poland. Makanaka Whata also had a tough day when losing 6-2, 7-6(2) to Mateya Stanisavljevic.
Mengezi Sibanda also bowed out following a 7-5, 6-2 defeat against Ikenna Okonkwo.
In the girls’ category Rutendo Chirimumimba lost to Gemma Ricci 6-3, 6-1. It was the same story for Chanelle Zhuwakini as she went down 6-4, 6-1 to Alice Haddad and Julie Tungamirai, who lost 6-2, 6-4 to Michelle Amy Geznenge.
In some of the doubles matches, Mtisi partnered Benjamin Mann of Canada and they beat the pair of Tendai Chihowa and Tendekai Musabaeka 6-4, 6-2 to progress to the second round. Felix Tazvivinga and Ved Shetty also pulled through to the next round.
In the girls’ doubles Zahara El Zein and her partner Melissa Nanjala of Kenya also advanced to the next round as well as Tinotenda Chipfakacha and her Italian partner Gemma Ricci.