Kenya’s Changawa beats Nedim of Ethiopia to advance to second round of Africa tourney
Top seed Kenyan Ishmael Changawa beat Ethiopia’s Abdalla Nedim 6-4, 6-4 in the first round of the Africa Nations Championship at the Nairobi Club yesterday.
Changawa settled early and outplayed his Ethiopian opponent 3-0 lead amid an array of serves and powerful ground strokes.
Nedim recovered briefly as he re-grouped to reduce the margin to 3-2 after winning the fourth and fifth games. Changawa won the sixth game to take a 4-2 lead but Nedim clinched the seventh game to trail 3-4. Changawa inched closer by winning the eighth game to move to set point but an error in the ninth game saw Nedim reduce the margin to 5-4.
Changawa then closed out the set in the final game. A fired up Nedim fought back in the second set and broke Changawa’s serve to take a 2-1 lead.
Changawa battled to win the fourth to tie the set and stepped up a gear to win the next two games for 4-2 lead.
Changawa went on to clinch the seventh game for 5-2 lead before a lapse in concentration saw him lose two games in a row to lead 5-4. He eventually closed out the set to move to the second round. Petty Ananda edged Fabrice Tuyishime of Rwanda 6-4, 6-2 to advance.
Kevin Cheruiyot also advanced with a 6-2, 6-1 win over Michael Amon of Ivory Coast while Ibrahim Kibet fell by the wayside as he lost to Mohammed Ali Bellalouna of Tunisia 4-6, 6-0, 7-5.
Nine countries are taking part in the week-long tournament including hosts Kenya, Congo DRC, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Ivory Coast, Morocco, Ethiopia, Tunisia, Congo Brazzaville and Gabon.
Kenya’s Ibrahim Kibet in action during the African Nation Cup 2016 at Nairobi Club on November 7, 2016.