BULAWAYO, Thursday, October 27, 1966 — A party of young British tennis players, an official team being sent to the South African circuit, has been instructed not to play in Rhodesia next month. The decision reached the Rhodesian Lawn Tennis Association yesterday, and was made by the British LTA.
But RTLA president, Mr Andy Kerr, said in Bulawayo he was convinced “a source higher than the LTA in England’’ was behind the ban.
The team — eight promising starlets, including Stanley Matthews Jnr, son of the former English soccer star and manager, John Barrett — was to have played matches in Bulawayo, Gwelo, Salisbury and Umtali next month.
The explanation given to our London correspondent last night by Mr Basil Reay, secretary of the Lawn Tennis Association, was that the team has to be back in Britain by the end of January.
He was clearly upset at suggestions that the players would be banned from visiting Rhodesia for political reasons.
But the scheduled date for the Rhodesian visit was next month, writes Martin Lee.
Says Mr Reay: “When the Rhodesian visit was suggested by our team manager, we thought it better to concentrate on South Africa because of various practical complications, like currency difficulties. But even without that there would simply be not enough time to fit in Rhodesia as well.”