Johnson Acquah defeated Reginald Okantey 7-6 (4), 6-1 in the final of the Kaiser Tennis Showdown yesterday 13th September 2020 at the Open Court Tennis Center in Sakumono.
This was the second time the two met in the friendly tennis event, the first coming in the group stage as Johnson who is Ghana’s No.1 ranked tennis player eased to a 6-2, 6-2 victory over Okantey. Johnson spoke to the press following his victory saying
“I’m proud of myself, and I really want to train more and win more tournaments. This competition I was playing with the sponsor over here [Open Court Tennis Center] so I knew the court most, that’s why I win this tournament. I work hard for this, it’s not a easy competition because my semi-final and final is not easy”
Johnson also thanked the organiser Kaiser West Africa Limited for coming to the aid of Ghanaian tennis players during these trying times “I really want to tell the sponsor that he has really than well for us [the players] because since the coronavirus came we don’t have anything to do, we don’t train, we don’t have anything and so as he did this for us we really thank him very much for doing this tournament for us.”
Kaiser is a German kitchen appliance brand which started its operations back in 1995 in Berlin, Germany is one of the biggest kitchen appliances companies in Europe and we spoke to Managing Director (MD) of Kaiser West Africa Limited, Nikita Loginov, to find out why he decided to organise this event.
“I have always been an avid player and supporter of tennis ever since I was a kid. My parents got me very early into the game…it was actually always my dream to become a professional tennis player but I never made it, business was my fate.”
“So when I came to Ghana I saw that you could play with the top players and that is what really motivated me and ultimately that is what gave me the inspiration to create the tournament,” Nikita concluded
The friendly event featured the Kaiser West Africa Limited MD as well as some of Ghana’s best including former African Games gold medalist Benjamin Fumi, former captain of the Golden Rackets, Japheth Bagerbaseh, winner of the Baby-Jet & Mancwa tourney, Johnson Acquah, Agaasi Tormegah, Pascal Ziyab, Reginald Okantey and Felix Hammond.
Johnson walked away from the event with a prize of $1000 while second place Okantey collected $500. Speaking about the future Nikita revealed he has plans to hold a more competitive tournament early next year “I would like to focus on tennis since that is where my heart is, that is where my interest is and my knowledge. So, obviously I would like to do more tennis tournaments, I would like to create more winners in Ghana for tennis.”
“I think from January we will hopefully do another tournament, this year there is probably not enough time for us to do but next year January – February we will do a bigger tournament, a more serious tournament, this [Kaiser Tennis Showdown] is just a showdown. We will do a proper tournament next year.”
by Leroy Hawkson|TalksAfrica.com