Rwanda Tennis Open: Title hopes hinge on ladies

Olivier Havugimana is the only Rwandan in the men's semi-finals, while four home players occupy all the four semi-final slots in women's category. /File

Rwanda’s hopes of winning gold in the Rwanda Tennis Open hinge on the women’s singles category as the four slots in the semi-finals are occupied by Rwandan players.

The last four, taking place today at Amahoro Stadium, will be an all-Rwandan affair, while the men's category is mostly likely to remain a Kenyan contest, since only one Rwandan player – Olivier Havugimana ­­– managed to reach the semi-finals.

In Thursday’s quarter-finals, hopeful Joselyn Umulisa was the first to book a ticket to the semi-finals, and she takes on archrival and third seed Megame Ingabire in the battle for a spot to the title match.

Umulisa dispatched Firdaus Cyiza 6-1 6-2 yesterday, while Ingabire saw off youngster Belyse Irakonze 6-0 6-2.

"I am ready to fight. Definitely she (Ingabire) should expect a good show from me," Umulisa told Times Sport on Thursday after acing her way to the semi-finals.

By press time, another semi-finalist Caline Nishimwe, who edged out Gisele Umumararungu 7-6 (4) 6-3, was yet to know who she would be up against between Olive Tuyisenge and Rona Tuyishime.

In the men's semi-finals, holder Ismael Changawa, of Kenya, takes on compatriot Ibrahim Kibet, while Rwanda top-seed Havugimana faces Kevin Cheruiyot, another Kenyan.

After Friday’s semi-finals, Saturday will be a rest day before the week-long tournament concludes with the finals on Sunday.

editor@newtimesrwanda.com

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