Tennis team seeks return to glory

Zimbabwe enters the tennis courts in Egypt on Monday hoping to salvage some pride after five years of failure to qualify for the Davis Cup Euro-Africa Zone Group Three.


The team, once again led by Martin Dzuwa, 36, will take on the likes of Algeria, Benin, Congo Brazzaville, Botswana, Namibia, Rwanda, Madagascar, Libya and Mozambique for the qualifiers that will run from September 8 to 13.

The Zimbabweans have been out of the limelight in Davis Cup tennis since 1998. They were last year denied entry into the Euro-Africa Zone Group Two after losing out to hosts Egypt in the play offs.

Although the Egyptians are not part of this year’s qualification process, they have been handed the honour to host the qualifiers because of their top facilities.

The Zimbabwean team, which also includes Takanyi Garanganga, Benjamin Locke and Mark Fyn, have Kenya and Nigeria as their strongest opposition in a competition from which the top two teams will be promoted to the Euro-Africa Zone Group 11 next year.

Zimbabwe reached the quarter finals of the World Group in 1998 after overcoming the likes of Croatia, Ukraine, Switzerland, Great Britain, and Australia on their way to the penultimate stage.

They also had the honour of bringing to Zimbabwe and to Africa the likes of former world number ones John McEnroe and Andre Aggasi.

Since the retirement of Byron and Wayne Black and Kevin Ullyett, Zimbabwe has struggled to recapture the form of old and have sunk among the weakest tennis nations on the continent.

The likes of Genius Chidzikwe and now Garanganga have come through, but success has been hard to come by.

“We have prepared fully for this assignment. I think we will win and qualify. Then we will take it from there on our way back to the World Group again,” said Dzuwa.

Post published in: Sport

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