mFriday, as part of its corporate social responsibility, organized a tennis youth tournament at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium. The Kumasi Youth Tennis Tournament took place on the 14th and 15th of April, 2012 and was mainly organized for the youth between the ages of ten and fourteen. This, however, did not deter tennis players as young as seven to come and display their talents to those present.
Tennis, unlike football, does not receive much attention in Ghana and thus most of the talented youth in the game go unnoticed and this also plays a role in Ghana’s poor representation in the sport. mFriday, thus decided to organize this event to help reduce the apathy of Ghanaians towards the sport and to unearth the numerous unnoticed talents the country has to offer.
As a result of the kids and coaches interests, mFriday proposed the creation of the Kumasi Youth Tennis Association in order to groom the next Ghana Tennis Star who would eventually represent the country in international competitions. This Tennis Tournament for the Kumasi Youth Tennis Association will take place every quarter. As mFriday is expanding, the Tennis tournament will be extended to every region in the country and eventually it will become a nationwide tournament that will be proudly sponsored by mFriday and other corporate sponsors.
The two day event started on Saturday, the 14th of April with the preliminary and qualifying stages of the tournament. The age groups for the event were ten, twelve and fourteen years for both male and female categories. The tournament began at 9 am with the co-founders of mFriday both present. Mr. Robert Okine and Mr. Pierre Brunache Jr. were not there alone as they had invited Mr. Anis Haffar of the GATE Institute and Miriam Rosenthal, formally of New Beach Realtors. The tournament was open to the public and was presided over by Mr. Joseph Acquah (Ashanti Regional Tennis Coach), Mr. Prince Asare Sekyi (Tennis Association General Secretary) and Mr. Akweiteh (Sports Teacher of D & D Academy). The first phase of the tournament ended on that day at 3pm to give way to the knock-out stages the following day.
On the 15th of April, the knock-out stages began at 9am as the winners of the qualifying and preliminary stages set about the task to win the first prize on offer. This made the competition keener and this was displayed even better by the tears that run down the cheeks of some of the losers. There was a lot of skill and tactical brilliance on display by the youth on display as well they realized they were getting closer and closer to the prize. To ensure that these children received the necessary attention they deserved, mFriday invited media like Ghana Television (GTV), NET 2 TV, Metro TV, TV Africa and Daily Graphic to capture such a rare occasion in Ghana.
At the end of the event, Mr. Akwesi Agyeman Gyemibi (Regional Chairman of the Tennis Association) was present to officially bring the tournament to a close and initiate the presentation of awards and cash prizes. The cofounders of mNotify, a start-up of mFriday, helped Mrs. Francisca Esselfie of Staff National Sports Authority to present the prizes.
The winners for the ten years boys’ and girls’ category were Festus Appiah and Serena Acquah respectively. Monica Brobbey Sr and Owusu Ansah were the winners in the twelve year old’s category and Gideon Owusu and Beatrice Arthur were the winners in the fourteen year old’s category.
mFriday, as part of the winners’ package, will provide them with kits and professional trainers as these children do indeed hold a lot of promise. The participants were really happy and already anxiously preparing for the next tennis tournament in July 2012. Stay tuned for the exact dates.