THE MAIDEN edition of the Rainbow Nations Challenge Tennis Tournament – an event organized by the Ghana South African Business Chamber (GSABC) to foster diplomatic cooperation in Africa and beyond – saw a colourful closing ceremony in Accra.
Held between Tuesday, May 10 to Thursday, May 12 at the Accra Lawn Tennis Club, the event brought together participants, including 56 professional and amateur as well as juvenile tennis players from across 23 countries and six continents [Africa, Europe, North America, South America, Asia, and Australia] who competed for honours.
Under the Patronage of the South African High Commissioner, Her Excellency, Grace Mason, the 3-day event aimed at fostering a closer relationship between the diplomatic and business communities in Ghana, especially in the post-Covid era, while providing networking opportunities for development.
The event was graced by the presence of many high profile personalities from across political and diplomatic circles including Ghana’s Deputy Minister for Trade and Industry, Herbert Krapa; Ghana’s Ambassador to Belgium, Sena Siaw Boateng; the United States (US) Ambassador-designate as well as representatives from the Ghana Tennis Federation.
The South African High Commissioner, in her remarks, highlighted the need for continuous cooperation between Ghana and other nations, especially South Africa, while urging businesses to leverage the opportunities presented by the friendship that existed between the countries.
The Deputy Minister for Trade and Industry, Herbert Krapa stressed the “important” roles that ambassadors and high commissioners have to play, especially “when economies are trying to bounce back” after the Covid-19 pandemic.
“There’s the need to build synergies to enhance development. We are in a time where businesses have to resume fully”, he stated.
On her part, Ghana’s Ambassador to Belgium, Sena Siaw Boateng indicated that the tournament would provide businesses a multifaceted opportunity for individuals including diplomats to network.
Sandwiched between the semi-finals and the final, was an exhibition match between the top two under 15s in Ghanaian tennis, Naa Shika McKorley, daughter of business magnate, Daniel McKorley; and Sisu Tomegah in which the latter emerged the eventual victor after a pulsating display from both players.
The final match was a double between Paul Pleva and Uwe German from the United States and Dough Hampshire and Ryan MacLean, from the United Kingdom (UK).
Characteristic of every finale, it was a very tightly-contested and breathtaking match that saw spectators let out various emotions.
The Paul Pleva-and-Uwe German team eventually beat their opponents to clinch the trophy and be crowned the first-ever champions of the Rainbow Nations Challenge Tennis Tournament.
Her Excellency Grace Mason presented the trophy to the winners who also received a specially commissioned artwork from Patti Blueh, a South African artist.
By Nii Adjei Mensahfio