ZIMBABWE’S number one tennis player Takanyi Garanganga has spoken of his delight after being honoured by the International Tennis Federation (ITF) for his role in the country’s promotion to 2015 Davis Cup Europe-Africa Zone Group II.
The 24-year-old United States-based star received honourable mention during the unofficial 2014 Davis Cup by BNP Paribas Awards alongside rising star Gael Monfils, who helped France reach the Davis Cup World Group final against Switzerland.
In a statement on the Davis Cup official website, ITF praised Garanganga for his performance and overall tournament results for the Davis Cup team.
“In the first instalment of our unofficial 2014 Davis Cup by BNP Paribas Awards, we look at the players who have made the biggest contribution to their nations in 2014. We will select a Top Five, but also have a few honourable mentions.
Takanyi Garanganga led Zimbabwe to promotion from Africa Zone Group III, winning all three singles rubbers and the only doubles rubber he contested,” ITF said.
Garanganga won all his matches during the Africa Group III tournament held in Egypt last September as the country’s Davis Cup team ended an eight-year wait to gain promotion into the Davis Cup Euro-Africa Zone Group II.
The reigning All-Africa Games gold medalist was part of the team which included captain Martin Dzuwa, United States-based Benjamin Lock and the Spain-based Tinotenda Chanakira and Mark Fynn.
Garanganga said he was pleased with the recognition before adding that the reigning team of the year at the Annual National Sports Awards (Ansa) would be ready for their 2015 Europe-Africa Zone Group II home tie against Bosnia and Herzegovina in March.
“I’m so grateful for the honorable mention in the 2014 Davis Cup MVP Awards. All would not be possible without the admin staff at Tennis Zimbabwe, sponsors, supporters and our captain Martin Dzuwa. It has been an honour representing Zimbabwe. The team and I will continue to do our best to keep the flag flying high, it’s not easy, but it’s certainly most rewarding to do what you dreamed of as a kid. All I can say is, we will be ready for our tie on March 6th in Harare,” Garanganga said.
Garanganga, who last month won the Dakar Open in Senegal, continues to make the country proud despite not receiving any support from the government and local corporate world.
His recognition at the highest level comes at a time when Tennis Zimbabwe is currently battling to secure the $100 000 required to host the Davis Cup tie against Bosnia and Herzegovina.