ZIMBABWEAN junior tennis ace Nicole Dzenga has set her sights on more success after an impressive run on the International Tennis Federation (ITF) Junior Circuit in West Africa recently.
Dzenga (17) completed one of the most dominant displays by a local junior tennis player in recent years after winning two singles titles and all three doubles titles at the ITF West & Central Africa Junior Circuit tournaments in Togo and Benin.
The impressive run saw Dzenga breaking into the top 200 on the ITF Junior World rankings for the first time in her junior tennis career, lifting her to position 180 in the world and number eight in Africa.
Reflecting on the successful tour Dzenga said although she has surpassed the targets she had set for herself before the start of the year, she would continue working hard on her game.
“I’m very happy with the results I got in West Africa and I just want to thank all the people who made it possible for me to compete there,” Dzenga said in an interview with NewsDay Sport from her base in South Africa.
“It was a very good tour for me as I managed to get into all three singles finals, winning two and losing one and winning all three doubles titles. The wins were really special as they helped me improve my world ranking significantly which will help me get scholarship offers from universities and colleges in the US,” she said.
Dzenga, who is hoping to continue her impressive run in upcoming ITF junior and Futures tournaments before the end of the year, said she would continue to keep a fine balance between tennis and her studies.
“I’m not going to be putting pressure on myself and will continue to take it one tournament at a time. I have some junior tournaments and Futures events lined up before the end of the year.
“I will also be giving equal attention to my studies. For me school always starts first before tennis and so far I have managed to successfully balance the two,” she said.
Meanwhile her father, Regis Dzenga, the former Harare United and Agatha Sheneti Soccer Academy founder paid tribute to his former soccer protégées such as Edward Sadomba and Onismor Bhasera, among others, for sponsoring his daughter’s trip to West Africa.
“What is more interesting about Nicole’s successful trip to West Africa is that she was sponsored by former Agatha Sheneti Soccer Academy and Harare United soccer players, in particular Onismor Bhasera, Ali Sadiki, Peter and Patrick Mubaiwa, Edward Sadomba and Blessing Mutsveta. As you know we used to run the academy.
These boys covered her airfares and accommodation for the trip. We are extremely grateful to this extended family and we are glad she made them and Zimbabwe proud,” said Dzenga.