Ten­nis Zim­babwe on Fed Cup

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Sport - Sports Re­porter

TEN­NIS Zim­babwe pres­i­dent Regis Bhunu has said they are con­sid­er­ing to re­turn to the Fed Cup as they be­lieve there are up-and-com­ing play­ers with the po­ten­tial to com­pete at that level.

The Fed Cup is the pre­mier in­ter­na­tional team com­pe­ti­tion in women’s ten­nis and Zim­babwe has not com­peted since 2008.

Bhunu said they are con­sid­er­ing par­tic­i­pa­tion in the event next year and are work­ing on se­cur­ing spon­sor­ship to en­sure Zim­babwe’s par­tic­i­pa­tion be­comes a re­al­ity.

“It’s still work in progress. We are con­tem­plat­ing en­ter­ing the event be­cause we be­lieve now we have the strength to play at the Fed Cup. But we still need to make sure we get a spon­sor.

“If we find some­one to take it we are ready to go be­cause in terms of ca­pa­bil­ity of play­ing at that level we have it.

“We wanted to en­ter next year but we are still try­ing to see if we can get tak­ers. But we will try to push. The worst sce­nario is if we can’t en­ter next year we will en­ter the fol­low­ing year. We need around $15 000,” said Bhunu.

The na­tional as­so­ci­a­tion has over the past few years been on a re­build­ing path which saw the re­turn of the ITF Fu­tures events in 2012.

And the fu­tures tour­na­ments have be­come a reg­u­lar fea­ture on the lo­cal ten­nis cal­en­dar since then. Zim­babwe had last hosted the events in 2005.

Last year Zim­babwe also hosted two Davis Cup ties af­ter their pro­mo­tion into the Europe/Africa Group II in 2014.

How­ever, they were this year rel­e­gated to the Africa Zone Group III when they lost to Fin­land and Ge­or­gia.

Bhunu said while they want to cre­ate more com­pe­ti­tion for the girls they also be­lieve the play­ers have what it takes to com­pete at such level.

“We need to be ac­tive more and sec­ond our girls are be­com­ing strong to com­pete at that level. Va­le­ria (Bhunu) has been ris­ing in her own way.

“We also have Ni­cole Dzenga and we be­lieve it would be easy for us to get into the Euro-Group.

“Our par­tic­i­pa­tion in the Fed Cup in­creases the hype for ten­nis and ten­nis devel­op­ment in­creases. It in­creases the at­ten­tion to ten­nis news and in­creases our games and the ad­van­tage is the fan base in­creases.

“Even for the younger girls there will be more com­pe­ti­tion be­cause of the Fed Cup, they have some­thing to play for. Like what is hap­pen­ing with the boys,” said Bhunu.

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