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ACSA Soweto Open 2012, Day 2 - A Golden Opportunity for the City of Gold.

July 02, 2012
The 2nd Airports Company South Africa Soweto Open, sanctioned by the International Tennis Federation (ITF), part of the ITF World Wheelchair Tennis Tour, takes place from 1 – 4 July 2012 at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) Tennis Club.

It was a day filled with mixed emotions as the 8th seed Chankie Moloto from Witbank ended the youngster, Nhlanhla Dhlomo from Umlazi, Kwazulu Natal's 1st tournament. Dhlomo did not leave a defeated man, but has gained valuable experience and a good injection of self confidence by beating B Hloma yesterday in the opening round 6-3, 6-1. Also in the men's 2nd draw, it was the 15 year old Thato Tsomole from Hartebeespoortdam that had everyone talking. He caused the upset of the day by beating the second seed Joseph Manzini from Limpopo 4-6, 6-1, 6-0. Tsomole was not yet done, he kept on wowing the crowd and pulled out all the stops to win against the experienced Bongani Dlamini from Tembisa 6-2, 6-4. The day also produced another upset with the 8 seed Chankie Moloto getting the upper hand over the fourth seed Sifundile Dingezwini from Bizana in the Eastern Cape; Moloto thumped Dingezwini 6-0, 6-0. The semi-finals in the Men's 2nd draw are not to be missed tomorrow with A Quiphu (1) facing S Jwara (3) and C Moloto vs T Tsomole.

In the Men's Main draw quarter finals, the top seeded players progressed with ease. The top seed and Paralympic qualifier Evans Maripa's powerful serve and excellent mobility rendered Patrick Selepe helpless. Maripa defeated Selepe 6-2, 6-1 to advance to the semi-finals tomorrow. Defending Champion and second seed Sydwell Mathonsi was eager to get the match against Frank Ramakoatsi underway and was pleased with his 6-3, 6-2 win. Leon Els, the third seed from Pothchefstroom also advanced to the semi-finals after beating M Thientsi 6-2, 7-5. The 4th and last player to advance to the semi finals was 4th seed Ishmael Tshipuke from Limpopo. He won his quarter final match with a convincing win over B Vuma from Khayelitsha; 6-1, 6-0. It is expected that Maripa and Mathonsi will once again face each other in the finals of the ACSA Soweto Open, which will be a titanic battle not to be missed.

The Ladies first round matches started today and produced some exciting tennis, most notably was the match between Thandeka Dhladhla, ranked no. 7 in SA, and Busi Mredlane. Dhladhla clinched the match in a close second set 6-2, 4-6, 6-4. The on form top seed Rose van der Meer advanced to the quarter finals by winning her match against T Hlatswayo 6-1, 6-0. Other players advancing to the quarter finals in the ladies draw are Mariska Venter who defeated Noma-Afrika Gxumisa and Mable Mankgele who made quick work of Z Wille, defeating her 6-0,6-0.

A total of 67 players are competing in the Airports Company South Africa Soweto Open, with the majority of players being from our regional programmes. The focus for this event, being a Future Level Event, is to give as many players as possible the opportunity to gain world ranking points and experience. It is the perfect environment to introduce new talent to international competitions, and provide them with valuable competitive experience.

The top ranked South African players that will be competing are:

MEN's Division: WOMEN's Division:

Name and Surname SA Rank Name and Surname SA Rank

Evans Maripa 1 Rose van der Meer 3

Sydwell Mathonsi 2 Mabel Mankgele 4

Leon Els 4 Thandeka Dhladhla 7

Ishmael Tshipuke 5 Thando Hlatswayo 8

JUNIOR's Division:

Name and Surname SA Rank

Gift Lekhanyane 1

Mabel Mankgele 2

Mariska Venter 3

Sean de Hilster 4

Bonga Mbhele 5

Airports Company South Africa continues to support Wheelchair Tennis South Africa and are thrilled to be hosting this event. The tournament gives Airports Company South Africa and WTSA a golden opportunity to showcase our local talent.

Participation in local and international tournaments such as these is made possible by the generous sponsorships offered by Airports Company South Africa, the official sponsor of the sport.

Venue: University of Johannesburg (UJ) Tennis Club

Cnr Romsey Street & Lancaster Ave Westdene Johannesburg

Time: 09h00-16h00 daily

Date: 1 – 4 July 2012

For more information, please contact Bianca Morkel Tel: 083 386 4002, Fax: 086 651 6664

Email: Other resources worth a visit include:; like our Facebook page: WheelchairTennisSA and follow us on Twitter: @WCTennis.

Bianca Morkel

PR Manager - WTSA


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