Out of Africa with pride for
July 9, 2002 12:40
NORFOLK tennis ace Richard Bloomfield has returned
from two successful tournaments in Africa.E-mail
this story to a friend
reached the quarter-final of the men's singles in the F2
Futures tournament in Rwanda, and was winner of the
men's doubles, together with his Swedish partner Robert
He then moved on to Mombassa in Kenya
for an F1 Futures tournament in which he lost in the
final of the men's singles.
The doubles proved
less successful as he exited in the first round to a
pair including Norwich's Barry Fulcher.
Rwanda, Ireland's David Mullins was Bloomfield's first
round victim in the singles as the Norfolk player won
2-6 7-5 6-3, and carried his form into the second round
where he beat South African Johan Du Randt 4-6 7-6
Unfortunately his run ended in the
quarter-finals when he lost 7-6 4-6 3-6 to Genius
In the doubles Bloomfield and
Gustafsson beat Zimbabwe's Zibusiso Ncube and Gwinyai
Tongoona 6-2 6-2 in the final.
installed as the number eight seed for the competition
in Kenya, and lived up to his billing as he coasted to
the quarter-final by beating Zimbabwe's Jesse Koti 6-2
6-1 in the first round, and Gurarinder Singh, of India,
6-0 6-0 in the second round.
South Africa's Nick
McDonald provided a stiffer test in the quarter-finals,
winning a set, but Bloomfield went on to beat him 7-5
Bloomfield was again taken to three sets
in the semi-final by German Andreas Spaniol, but again
triumphed 6-1 0-6 7-6.
Unfortunately he was not
able to carry his winning form through to the final and
was beaten 6-3 6-3 by Tunisian Oualid
Fulcher did not fare as well as his
Norfolk colleague in the singles, and the number five
seed was knocked out in the first round 6-4 6-2 by
He had better fortunes in the
doubles as after he and doubles partner Gwenael Gueit
beat Bloomfield and Henry Adjei-Darko 6-2 6-2, they went
all the way to the final, only to be beaten 2-6 6-4 6-2
by the number one seeds Chidzikwe and Du
The tour marked Bloomfield's most
successful spell since winning the British Junior
Championship and joining the professional ranks –
although he is currently second place in the bonus pool
of the LTA British Tour event.
The points gained
from these two events will shoot Bloomfield up the world
rankings by around 300 places and is sure to also
improve his national ranking by four or five
Ironically the outstanding results
followed a disastrous start to the tour when Bloomfield
lost his baggage at the airport in Rwanda.