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Amateurs set to serve an ace

The inaugural tournament in the capital will feature over 25 singles and doubles categories

  • by Jai Prasad V. Rai 
sports Reporter
  • Published: 22:38 January 23, 2013
  • XPRESS

  • Image Credit: Gulf News Archives
  • Game on: Local star Peter Wessels and his 13-year-old student Emelie Schwarte (pictured with Wessels below) are expected to make a big impression at the Abu Dhabi competition Gulf news archives

Abu Dhabi International Tennis Centre at the Zayed Sports City, Abu Dhabi, will be abuzz when the UAE’s biggest inaugural amateur tennis championship is held from February 1 to 15.

The Abu Dhabi Wilson Tennis Cup features over 25 singles and doubles categories for players and prizes on offer total Dh47,000.

With some of the region’s best players already registered, including local star Peter Wessels, it looks like a fierce competition is in store for fans.

Wessels, once ranked number 72 in the world and currently coach at the PSS Academy at the International tennis Centre, is one of the hot favourites after winning the Shaikh Zayed Cup for the past two years.

“This tournament is a strong one. It’s a big tournament, one of the biggest in the UAE, maybe even the biggest. There are a lot of good players coming, but I will give it my best and we will see how it goes,” said Wessels.

“So far my biggest rival has been Omar Behroozian (UAE tennis player). He’s been number one in the UAE and played Davis Cup for maybe 15 years here. I have played three tournaments in the UAE and the two of the finals of those tournaments have been against him. I know that he is coaching in Dubai, so I am not sure if he is joining,” he added.

Wessels will also take pride from the fact that his student 13-year-old Emelie Schwarte is also one of the favourites to win the under-14 girls category.

All are welcome

“We are very excited to present the inaugural Abu Dhabi Wilson Tennis Cup,” said Barry Bremner, General Manager, Zayed Sports City. “As a leader in the tennis industry and the largest tennis facility in the UAE it makes sense that we would develop and host this first of its kind event, which is expected to welcome both elite and social players from the region.

“This is one of the many tennis events coming up in the International Tennis Centre and will be followed by the Tennis Open later this year in the build up to the Mubadala World Tennis Championship which will take place during the last week of December.”

Wilson brand manager, Syed Khaja, said: “We have a long-standing relationship with Zayed Sports City and are pleased to be strengthening that partnership with the new Abu Dhabi Wilson Tennis Cup. “Events like these help to drive the local participation efforts and help to inspire the next generation of tennis stars and we are delighted to be involved in that at a grass roots level.

“Being involved in community events like these is important to the heritage of the sport in the region and for the development of our brand and fits with Wilson global policy of bringing the energy of the game to all generations of tennis fans.”

The matches will be held from 5pm on weekdays and from 9pm on weekends.

The event is organised by Zayed Sport City and PSS-Emirates and is sponsored by Wilson. It’s also supported by the Abu Dhabi Sports Council and Tennis Emirates.

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