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National Tennis Centre being spruced up ahead of ITF junior tournament

National Tennis Centre being spruced up ahead of ITF junior tournament

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Repair work, which includes the resurfacing of all six courts and work on the perimeter fencing, is currently taking place at the National Tennis Centre, ahead of the International Tennis Federation (ITF) Junior tournament, set for August 8 to 16.

All added up, the cost to ready the facility is US$80,000.{{more}}

The project to effect the much needed repairs was made possible through funding from the Government of the St Vincent and the Grenadines.

The tournament, which has been hosted here since 2007, consists of an Under-14 and an Under-18 category. St Vincent and the Grenadines lost the Under-14 segment in 2014, because of the state of the National Tennis Centre.

Welcoming the timely intervention by Government was president of the St Vincent and the Grenadines Tennis Association (SVGTA) James Bascombe.

Buoyant about the upgrade, Bascombe told SEARCHLIGHT: “The upgrade of the facility was something we had to do in order to keep the tournament….This tournament is of national interest to St Vincent and the Grenadines.”

Bascombe expressed confidence in Sydney Lopez of Barbados to get the courts in shape in time for when the tournament’s control teams arrive here.

He also welcomed the return of the Under-14’s, which he said is critical to the overall scheme of things.

Bascombe noted that the recent erection of two courts on the nearby premises of the St Vincent and the Grenadines Community College was a plus, as these would be used as “practice courts.”

Practice courts are among the ITF’s requirements, according to Bascombe.

Participation in the tournament will come from Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, The Bahamas, Barbados, Bolivia, Canada, Costa Rica, Curacao, England, Germany, Guatemala, Honduras, Jamaica, Libya, Mexico, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Trinidad and Tobago, St Lucia, USA, Uzbekistan and St Vincent and the Grenadines.

The Under-14’s are seeking to gain points in the Confederation of Tennis of Central America and the Caribbean (COTEC) rankings, while the Under-18’s chase better standings in the ITF set-up.

The National Tennis Centre, which officially opened October 2000, was a gift from the Government of the Republic of China on Taiwan to the Government and people of St Vincent and the Grenadines.(RT)

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