The increase in the prize money of the Governor’s Cup Lagos Tennis Championship is already having effect on the qualification of players to play in the Main Draws.
There is no doubt that players will be fighting to win the $100,000 total prize money packaged for the two-leg competition.
The prize money includes $50,000 for winners of both the men and women’s categories.
Before now, the men’s winners earned $30,000 while their female counterparts earned $50,000.
However, with the increase in the prize money for the men from this year’s edition, the competition’s standard has increased and should continue to attract quality players than the previous editions.
To this end, some players who are willing to come to Lagos, but may not be able to feature in the Main Draws are asking for wildcards from the organisers.
Some of them have written to the Local Organising Committee, LOC, asking for this waiver.
A German player, who the organisers would not want to disclose his identity wrote in an email that “I am a tennis player from Germany and I would love to play your two ITF tournaments in October in Lagos. I already wanted to play them last year, but sadly I got a bad shoulder injury in the middle of the year and I needed surgery, so I was not able to play tennis for a while.
“My ranking last year before the injury was 594 WTA and I was in my way to get a even better one. However, since I was not able to play since this time, I lost almost all my ranking and I am right now only number 987 WTA.
“So I want to kindly ask you, if there maybe be any possibility for you to get for me a Main Draw wildcard for your tournament. Since it is going to be the first tournament I am playing after my injury break, and the first tournament on my way to come back.
“I would be so happy. I already want to say thank you for everything. I hope to here from you soon and hope to see you soon in Lagos at your tournament. I am very excited.”
The Tournament Director, Wale Oladunjoye noted that “I’m not surprised that the prize money we jacked up from this year will enhance the quality and standard of the competition. We will be glad to have more high ranked players coming to Lagos to play in the Governor’s Cup. This is a good development.”
The Governor’s Cup Lagos Tennis Championship has been organised annually to celebrate the sitting governor in Lagos State since the administration of Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
This year’s edition will be the second under the government of Mr Akinwunmi Ambode. It is scheduled to take place at the Lagos Lawn Tennis Club, Onikan from October 8 to 22.