Oduor enters quarters


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By Oscar Pilipili

Kenya’s top seed Caroline Oduor hit compatriot Veronicah Njeri 6-1, 6-1 to reach the tennis quarterfinals of KCB Kenya Open at Nairobi Club.

By winning the match yesterday, Oduor remained on track to claiming her third straight title this season after she emerged victorious at the Burundi and Uganda Open.

Joie Keter put up sterling performance to eliminate Faith Ndunda 6-3, 6-0 in a second round match and set up a quarterfinal date with Oduor.

At the lower tier of the draw, Burundian second seed Azisa Butoyi defeated unseeded Nadia Fernandez 6-4, 6-0 to reach the quarterfinals.

Hard Work

Butoyi, who trains at Sadili Oval Sports Club in Lang’ata, will play former Kenya international and veteran coach Christina Lukalo in the quarter-finals.

Lukalo was made to work hard before beating Shaila Ali 6-1, 5-7, 6-4 in a second round match.

“My participation in the tournament is just for fun but I’m glad to have reached the quarters,” Lukalo said.

Butoyi said her wish was to meet her elder sister Sakina Nshirimana in the final, but this has been made impossible by them all being in the lower tier of the draw.

“My dream was to meet my sister in the final and unfortunately the furthest we can reach together is the semi-finals,” said Sakina.

And in the first upset of the tournament, Kenya’s fourth seed Veronicah Osogo lost 3-6, 1-6 against South Africa’s Ohmer Fernandez in another second round match.

Osogo acknowledged that she was beaten by a superior player.

“Of course I would like to congratulate Fernandez for reaching the quarter-finals, I think she played just too good today,” she said.

“I made too many unforced errors and I couldn’t match her consistency on court,” Osogo said of the local-based South African yesterday.

In the men’s category, Ugandan top seed Duncan Mugabe beat Victor Okumu 6-2, 6-2 in a first round match to advance.

Round two

Second seed Jean Claude Gasigwa of Rwanda defeated Charles Stephen who came from the qualifying round 6-3, 6-4 to reach round two.

Meanwhile, organisers of the KCB Kenya Open have brought forward the ladies’ singles final by one day and it will now be played on Saturday at 2pm.

The tournament director Kepha Otieno also announced the scrapping of the veterans’ events due to low entry.

“The veterans’ events will not be played as at yesterday, there were only three proper entries received, a lady and two men,” Otieno said.

Veteran events are meant for players aged over 40 years.

Otieno said quarterfinals for both men and ladies singles will take place today starting 3pm.

Traditionally, ladies and men’s finals are held on the same day.

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