Local sportSport

New tennis courts enjoyed

"We would appreciate the upgrades of the other three courts to accommodate the rapidly growing tennis community," said Lelosa.

In the past year the Vosloorus Tennis Club (VTC) has seen a rapid growth in membership, particularly among children aged between seven and 12. One of its courts has recently been upgraded, and players are enjoying using it.

New players, like nine-year-old Sihle Amigo, who also plays guitar, fell in love with tennis as he watched his friends practising on the upgraded court. He is one of more than 100 youngsters who have taken up the sport in recent months.

“It looked like so much fun, especially on the new surface, so I decided to join the team. Now I try to get to practise as much as possible, and I really enjoy running around the court and playing against my friends,” he said.

The VTC is one of the projects that benefited from the partnership between the Gauteng Sports Confederation (GSC) and Gauteng Gambling Board (GGB), which started the facility upgrade programme in 2016.

Thanks to generous sponsorship from the GGB, the GSC was able to upgrade more than a dozen previously dilapidated sports facilities in disadvantaged areas across Gauteng.

“The upgrades have helped improve performance of participants and attracted a lot of public interest in the community,” said VTC coach Micheal Lelosa and executive member Thami Mthombeni.

They agreed that the new court has attracted mostly young individuals and has taken them off the streets and away from drugs.

“The upgrades have allowed us as a club to host leagues and invite the community to tennis events with pride.

“The club has produced players who have represented Gauteng in the selected regional and national competitions and they are confident that these upgrades will contribute to producing even more good tennis players in the different age groups that they cater for,” said Mthombeni.

Lelosa said there is a lot that still needs to be done.

“We would appreciate the upgrades of the other three courts to accommodate the rapidly growing tennis community.

“I would also like to see the young tennis players utilising these facilities. Parents and local schools must send children to come and train here. Parents must not only encourage their children to join the club but they must also support them. We promise to make their children the best players,” said Lelosa.

Lelosa said he would like the community members to take good care of the facilities.

“These facilities are for the community, they must not vandalise them,” Lelosa concluded.

Thabang Malatsi (15), who has played tennis since he was four years old, said the new court has helped him improve his performance.

“I now have access to the facility to practise without restrictions and having to worry about injuries. Tennis has played a huge role in my life and I hope to see myself competing at Wimbledon one day,” said Malatsi.

GSC president Barry Hendricks said it brought great satisfaction to know that, through these facility upgrades, they were able to restore hope and help contribute towards the growth of sports in the province.

“We are working on the second round of upgrades for the other three courts. The need is massive and we are grateful that we can help in our own unique way. We want to appeal to sponsors to come forward and work with us to uplift the needy communities through sport,” he said.

Related Articles

Back to top button