EDGAR Kazembe remained on course to retain his Midlands Open tennis title after defeating Jackson Kalaba in two straight sets to storm the semi finals.
Kazembe recorded a 6-2, 6-2 win over Kalaba to set up a semi final against third seed Henry Banda, who beat Chilito Zulu 4-6, 7-5, 6-3.
To reach this far, Kazembe started his campaign with a double bagel win over Sydney Mateta winning 6-0, 6-0 which was followed by a 6-1, 6-2 win over Mwiza Gondwe before overcoming Kalaba.
“I am happy to reach the semi finals, Kalaba gave me a good game and I’m now looking forward to playing the semi-finals and retain my title. I expect tough games but I have prepared well,” Kazembe said at the Lusaka Club after his victory.
The other semi final will see Eustacious Mwansa playing either Nkumbu Choonya or Ricky Nyirenda.
Mwansa, who is unseeded, caused an upset beating seventh seed Peter Theo in the first round 7-6, 7-5 before going on to eliminate Hilary Tembo in the second round and Goswami Arijit 6-4, 7-5 in the quarter finals.
In the women’s event, top seed Miriam Zulu cruised to the semi finals thanks to a resounding 6-1, 6-1 win over Wendy Zydel and was by Press time yesterday afternoon playing fourth seed Fridah Sakala in the semi finals.
Sakala beat Mwaza Ngulube 6-2, 6-3 while the other semi final pitted Idah Longwe against Maggie Mutale. Longwe, who is Under-18 seed one, caused an upset over third set Mwansa Mambwe who retired after developing crumps in both legs.Mutale, who tournament seed two, beat Diana Gondwe 6-1,6-0 to reach the last four.
The winner will pocket K2, 000 with the runner-up getting K1, 200 while the women champion will go away with K1,200 with the second-placed finisher getting K800.