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Preparations under way for Qarashai tennis tournament

By Roufan Nahhas - Feb 25,2014 - Last updated at Feb 25,2014

AMMAN –– The 2nd Jordan Qarashai Tennis Tournament will kick off on May 2 at Al Orthodoxi Club tennis courts with the participation of more than 50 tennis players representing various diplomatic missions, professional and amateur players.

The tournament was initiated by Jordanian tennis player Nanci Qarashai who decided to organise this event in order to allow more interaction among tennis players and give amateurs and tennis enthusiasts the opportunity to rub shoulders with professional players.

“I found it really possible for amateurs to play against professionals through an event where they can learn, experience and enjoy a one-day tournament without any pressure,” Qarashai told The Jordan Times.

“Registration is free for participants. The tournament is for ages 25 and up, and based on the success of last year we will have more participation and more competition this year,” she added.

According to Qarashai, players have already registered to be part of the event.

“Registration is open for all participants and we would like to see more female players taking part in the event,” she said. 

Last year, Iraq’s Hassan Sa’di won the first place and Jordan’s Nabil Morqos settled in the second place.

“We had a very interesting event last year where young and old, amateurs and professionals competing against each other. All players benefited from the experience they had and hopefully we will see more new faces this year in May,” Qarashai who started playing tennis in 2010 said.

Qarashai is toying with the idea of establishing a professional tennis academy in Jordan for youth who are willing to take this road seriously and become professionals at an early age.

“I am currently talking to parents and players in addition to several entities that are interested in this initiative and so far I received positive response especially from parents,” she added.

So far few clubs and only a handful of coaches, whether through the Jordan Tennis Federation or personal trainers, offer tennis lessons.

According to Qarashai, tennis as a sport has changed a lot in Jordan.

“The cost of playing tennis long time ago was really high and you had to pay a lot of money to buy the racquet and accessories or even hire a professional coach but today things have changed and tennis equipment are affordable and available for everyone,” Qarashai, who started as an amateur and then turned to professional,  said.

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