The Guyana Tennis Association (GTA) will serve off its annual GBTI Open lawn tennis competition at the GBTI Recreational Club, Kaieteur Street Bel-Air Park on Thursday.
According to a press release, the GBTI Open tournament has emerged over the years as the GTA’s number one competition on their annual calendar of activities and the two-week long tournament, which commences at 17:00hrs every competitive weekday and from 8:00am on weekends will feature several categories. Apart from the regular men’s Open singles and doubles, ladies Open singles and doubles, men’s Over 35 singles and doubles, mixed doubles and junior boys and girls’ Open singles, there will be the relatively new novices singles and doubles categories. The two new categories were established two years ago for beginners and sparked much interest as it allows individuals to compete at another level of the game, the release stated. The GTA said that it is hoping to surpass the number of entrants for the previous two years which is placed just over 120 entries since the local tennis playing population is once again on the increase.
Whilst some of the country’s top players have migrated there is still the expectation of a very high level of competition which will highlight the more seasoned players such as defending champion Anthony Downes, Leyland Leacock and top Berbician Carol Humphrey.
A strong challenge is expected in the Open categories from top juniors Daniel Lopes, Gavin Lewis and Nicola Ramdyhan.
GBTI’s CEO, John Tracey, who is also a former player, expressed his desire to see the sport regain its prominence. The annual sponsorship of this tournament and the provision of tennis facilities by Tracey both demonstrate his unwavering support for the development of the game.
The format for the Open categories is best of three sets while the men’s Over 35 will play a super tie-breaker for the third set. The novices’ categories will play one set.
Tournament Coordinators Andrew Sawh and Grace McCalman have distributed application forms to all clubs. They can be reached at 691-0940 and 626-7987 respectively for further information.