Batswana Deliver Stellar Performance in Gaborone World Tennis Tour

  • Silver medal points to prowess of Batswana tennis players
  • BTA says tourney underscored sports tourism for Botswana


The International Tennis Federation’s (ITF) J60 Gaborone World Tennis Tour came to a thrilling conclusion on Saturday, marking the end of a weeklong showcase of the exceptional tennis talent of Batswana players.

Held from 21 August to 26 August, the J60 Gaborone Tournament 2023 provided a stage for both established and emerging tennis players from various corners of the globe to compete.

The ITF J60 Gaborone World Tennis Tour featured players from countries like the USA, Canada, Britain, Poland, Zimbabwe, Mozambique Namibia, South Africa, Angola, China, Japan and Botswana as host.

Home crowd 

Held under the auspices of the Botswana Tennis Association (BTA), the tournament not only witnessed fierce on-court battles but also served as a platform for local athletes to demonstrate their prowess in front of a home crowd.

One regrettable moment was the unfortunate withdrawal of Mark Nawa in the singles quarterfinals due to an injury. But inspite of this setback, the enthusiasm and determination displayed by the player were truly inspiring.

In the girls’ singles category, Chelsea Chakanyuka captured the attention of spectators with her impressive journey to the quarterfinals.


Her remarkable run was marked by a hard-fought match against second-seeded Chel Nel of South Africa, which ended in a closely contested score of 6-4, 6-1.

Chakanyuka’s spirit remained unshaken in the doubles category. Partnering Naledi Raguin, they won a silver in the after losing 6/1/6/1 to Celina Joseph and Chel Nel of South Africa.

“The tournament was great and our players performed well,” said the president of BTA, Oaitse Thipe, in a telephone interview.

“It is wonderful to see local players delivering this kind of performance on home soil. Tournaments like this help our players to improve their international rankings to qualify for the likes of the US Open.

Junior Tennis Initiative 

“Tournaments like these are great for sports tourism because the players used Air Botswana to connect and stayed in local hotels,” he said. “It would great to continue to host competitions of this magnitude.”

Meanwhile, Thipe noted that BTA continues to implement the Junior Tennis Initiative, which is a development programme supported by ITF.

According to the ITF website, the initiative provides opportunities for children around the world to pick up a racket for the first time, encouraging them to play in local competitions and sessions within schools.

“It is the launch point for many aspiring competitive players and a platform to introduce more talent to the game within a country’s national programme,” it says.