ONE of the country’s emerging tennis players, Hillary Ncube, left the country for the United States on Wednesday and will be admitted to Bethany College in Kansas on a tennis scholarship.
BY FORTUNE MBELE
Ncube (18) flew out of the country from Joshua Mqabuko International Airport in Bulawayo to South Africa, where he connected to Chicago yesterday and was expected to arrive in Kansas a day later.
One of his coaches at GC Tennis Academy in Bulawayo, Thesly Mufunda, who travelled with the junior national team for the Southern Africa Zonal Championships in Namibia recently, yesterday confirmed that Ncube landed a scholarship and would be playing college tennis for Bethany.
“He (Ncube) left Bulawayo yesterday (Wednesday) for Johannesburg and he flew to Chicago today (yesterday) before connecting to Kansas. He got a tennis scholarship at Bethany College and his flights have been arranged by Jeri Stewart of the J Stewart Academy in the US,” he said. Stewart has in the past held coaching clinics in Bulawayo with GC Tennis Academy.
Ncube, a former St Columbus High School student, won the Bulawayo Open last year and was runner-up in the Zim Closed tournament, losing to Tanaka Chabata in the final.
“He has potential. He could have gone all the way, but due to lack of funding, he has not gained much exposure and he is not ATP-ranked, but ended last year ranked on position one in the country. If he focuses, Hillary has a chance to play top-level tennis at college and make it into the country’s Under-20 team,” Mufunda said.
Ncube trained under Mufunda and Adam Joelson at GC Academy and at Bulawayo Athletic Club for 10 years, starting when he was eight to nine years old until he finished his junior tennis last year after having started training under former Matabeleland Metropolitan Tennis Board chairman, Zebedia Mawisire.
He has rubbed shoulders with the likes of Davis Cup team member, Mehluli Sibanda in his playing career. Ncube will be studying financial accounting at Bethany College.