Uganda national Paul Kadoma has scooped top prize at the 2017 edition at the annual KENGEN Parklands International Squash Tournament.
Kadoma who fought hard coming from two down to 3-2 to win the Men’s final acknowledged it was through determination that he reached the finals but noted that beating Kenya’s Hardeep Reel was a tall order for him in this year’s tournaments.
Hardeep a veteran squash player had won the first and second round (14-12) and (11-3) respectively before Kadoma came back fighting in the 3rd, 4th and 5th Sets (11-8), (11-8) and (11-4) respectively to emerge the victor.
It has been a great tournament for Ugandans. Hard work has paid off we are happy to have scooped the Nakuru KENGEN tournament two weeks ago that I won and the parklands tournament which my compatriot Kadoma has won, Ian Rukunya a veteran international champion and speaking on behalf of the Ugandan team said.
In the ladies category, Kenya’s champion Khaaliqa Nimji retained the ladies title yet another year after beating her rival Elizabeth Mulwa.
The 19 year old however said that although she was happy she won the tournament and has been winning in previous years, it was time that more women came out and make the tournament stiff and competitive.
Although I will be leaving for college outside Kenya come January, am hoping I will be back in the 2018 tournament to defend my position, Khaaliqa added.
John Sagui who was representing KENGEN, the main sponsors of the event congratulated the winners for fighting hard but also challenged them to step up and take the game a notch higher.
The quality of squash of late has gone down and it is a high time that we do something about it especially in areas of mentoring young talents , he said
Sagui said as KENGEN, they will be sponsoring a tournament for the youth by going round in identifying talent of juniors and bringing them on board to participate in the competitions .
We are committed to support squash as a sport in this country and we want to provide talented players an opportunity to test their games, have them play as many matches, he noted.
Apart the ladies and men’s category finalists, other categories were the Super plate final category that was won by Prince Mukuka from Zambia while Kenya’s Billy Jusa took runners up.
Henry Ingham from Britain won the Main plate beating Anish Harania to second place while Loed Van Der Pluism from Netherlands scooped the ladies plate beating Aarna Malde.
Junior tournaments categories for both boys and girls were for the under 10s, under 14s and under 19 who also received trophies as well as showed prowess in mastering of the game.
According to the organizers, the juniors are the future champions of the tournament that should be watched and talent tapped especially since they showed good play and discipline during the tournament.
KENGEN has been supporting the squash tournaments for the last 17 years and is normally organized by the Parklands Sports Club.
Source: Kenya News Agency