Zimbabwe: Benjamin Lock Criticises Tennis Zimbabwe for Player Neglect During COVID-19 Lockdown

Zimbabwe tennis star Benjamin Lock has criticised Tennis Zimbabwe for “abandoning” local players as they continue to feel the negative effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Expressing his disappointment with the Davis Cup World Group II tie against China, Lock revealed he was even more frustrated by lack of support from the local tennis governing body.

“Disappointed @DavisCup won’t happen this year. Even more disappointed at Tennis Zimbabwe for abandoning their athletes with no support & no opportunities for the last 3 months. Doesn’t have to be like this,” Lock revealed in a post on Twitter yesterday.

The 27-year-old Benjamin and his young brother Courtney, 23, have consistently lifted the country’s flag high on the international scene while also forming a formidable partnership for Zimbabwe in the Davis Cup competition.

The pair who were eager to represent the country in the Davis Cup will however have to wait a little longer before returning to action after Tennis Zimbabwe’s decision to postpone the tie against China.

The tie was set to be played on either Friday, 18 – Saturday, 19 September, or Saturday, 19 – Sunday, 20 September in Harare.

Professional tennis has been paralysed since March 12 due to the coronavirus pandemic with several international tournaments around the world being either postponed or cancelled until at least the end of July.

Benjamin believes the Davis Cup tie against China would have been an opportunity for local players to get some competitive action after a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

“I have been training every single day with my brother Courtney, since the postponement of the Tour in March, at private facilities.

“We are in the best physical shape of our lives and are playing some of our best tennis as well.

“We were very excited to play the tie and this tie is what has been motivating us during this lockdown,” Lock said.

The Davis Cup team member expressed concern over lack of communication and support during this difficult period.

“During this lockdown, I have not been contacted by the executive board despite my efforts to reach out to them,” he said.

“Other national associations around the world provided financial support for their players during this time, why should Zimbabwe be any different?” said Lock.

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